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Clarifications regarding the use of model-fitting methods of kinetic analysis for determining the activation energy from a single non-isothermal curve

Pedro E Sánchez-Jiménez*, Luis A Pérez-Maqueda, Antonio Perejón and José M Criado

Author Affiliations

Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Sevilla, C.S.I.C.-Universidad de Sevilla, C. Américo Vespucio nº49, Sevilla 41092, Spain

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Chemistry Central Journal 2013, 7:25  doi:10.1186/1752-153X-7-25

Published: 5 February 2013

Abstract

Background

This paper provides some clarifications regarding the use of model-fitting methods of kinetic analysis for estimating the activation energy of a process, in response to some results recently published in Chemistry Central journal.

Findings

The model fitting methods of Arrhenius and Savata are used to determine the activation energy of a single simulated curve. It is shown that most kinetic models correctly fit the data, each providing a different value for the activation energy. Therefore it is not really possible to determine the correct activation energy from a single non-isothermal curve. On the other hand, when a set of curves are recorded under different heating schedules are used, the correct kinetic parameters can be clearly discerned.

Conclusions

Here, it is shown that the activation energy and the kinetic model cannot be unambiguously determined from a single experimental curve recorded under non isothermal conditions. Thus, the use of a set of curves recorded under different heating schedules is mandatory if model-fitting methods are employed.