Amherst Rheology Course:

Synergy Between Experiment and Theory in Rheology


alternating between Amherst Massachusetts/USA and Berlin/Germany

Directed by H. Henning Winter, Amherst MA, USA (


Course Outline


Part A:  Dynamic Mechanical Spectroscopy  (Basic Concepts and Their Application)

Shifting of Data (Manual Shift, Automated Shift)

            Shift Factors for Time-Temperature Superposition (tTS)

            Second Set of Shift Factors (search for patterns: concentration, mol. weight, etc.)

Determination of Relaxation Time Spectra and Retardation Time Spectra

Rheological Constants and Material Functions

      Time-Dependent Functions (modulus G(t) and J(t))

      Cole-Cole, Han Plot, van Gurp Palmen Plot, Cox-Merz Plot 

Time Resolved Methods

         Rheology of Gelation, Rheology of  Crystallization


Part B:  Data Analysis (not mechanical spectroscopy)

Steady Shear Functions

Viscosity: Time-Temperature Superposition, Fit Functions (Carreau etc.)

Yield Stress Models (Bingham, Casson, Hershel-Bulkley)

Extensional Flow Experiments


Part C: Theory of Polymer Dynamics (Basic Concepts and their Graphical Representation)

Linear Viscoelasticity

Classical Theories: Maxwell, Rouse, Doi

Empirical Models: Baumgaertel-Schausberger-Winter, Chambon-Winter

Theory of Polymer Melt and Solution : Tube Dilation (Blackwell/McLeish, UK)

Polymer Emulsion (Palierne)

Non-linear Viscoelasticity (Start-Up of Shear and Extension)

Classical Theories: Lodge Elastic Liquid

Empirical Models: Wagner Damping Function

Theory of Polymer Melt and Solution :

Tube Dilation (Blackwell/McLeish, UK)

                        Molecular Stress Function (Wagner, Berlin)


Teaching Method

Presentation of basic concepts followed by real-time generation of all graphs with the class.