Fourier transform infrared photoacoustic spectroscopy has been used for quantitative surface analysis of silica treated with trifunctional coupling agents such as γ-Methacryloxypropyltriethoxysilane (γ-MPS), γ-Glycidoxypropyltrimethoxysilane (γ-GPS), and γ-Aminopropyltri-ethoxysilane (γ-APS). The calibration curves are obtained for several characteristic bands of the coupling agents. Using a highly polarizable gas in the photoacoustic cell and comparing the spectra with a nonpolarizable coupling gas, it is possible to evaluate orientation of the coupling agents on the silica surface. The type of orientation is a function of the extent of surface coverage. At low surface coverage, coupling agents tend to take a perpendicular orientation with respect to the surface, and increasing surface coverage leads to parallel orientation. Increasing the coupling agent concentration also causes orientational changes of the species which form chemical bonds with the silica surface (hydroxyl, water, and carbonyl groups).

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