In the course of studies on the thermal stability of polymeric materials, it was of interest to follow the course of oxidative and non-oxidative degradation reactions of various functional groups in the polymers using infrared spectroscopy. In general, the method available for this type of investigation has been limited to heating the polymer sample in an oven followed by cooling of the specimen and determination of its infrared spectrum <i>(1).</i> By successive heating and cooling cycles with intermittent spectral evaluation a series of spectra are obtained which are indicative of changes of functionality taking place under the degradative conditions. Recently <i>(2),</i> the use of a heated wire cell has been reported for infrared studies of polymers up to 145°C. The advantage of this type of unit is that continuous monitoring of the sample is possible at the reaction temperature.

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