A spectrometer for detecting <i>dynamic infrared linear dichroism</i> (DIRLD) induced by a small-amplitude oscillatory strain is described. The strain-induced dynamic variations of absorbance and linear dichroism, as well as the normal static absorbance and dichroism, are measured simultaneously as functions of IR wavenumber, temperature, and strain frequency. The phase (temporal) relationships between the dynamic optical signals and the applied strain are also obtained. The instrument is sensitive enough to detect dynamic optical signals on the order of 10<sup>−4</sup> absorbance units with a time resolution of about 14 μs. The dynamic dichroism signals arise from the strain-induced temporary reorientation of dipole-transition moments associated with the molecular vibrations of chemical functional groups. Both the rate and extent of reorientations are strongly influenced by the local molecular environment of the functional groups. Because of the specificity of IR absorbance bands to the individual submolecular structures, DIRLD spectroscopy is especially suited for the study of the intra- and intermolecular interactions and the detection of subtle changes in the local molecular environment. Example DIRLD spectra of atactic polystyrene are presented to demonstrate the potential utility of this spectroscopic technique.

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