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Effect of Temperature on High Shear-Induced Gelation of Charge-Stabilized Colloids without Adding Electrolytes

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journal contribution
posted on 16.02.2010, 00:00 by Hua Wu, Aikaterini Tsoutsoura, Marco Lattuada, Alessio Zaccone, Massimo Morbidelli
We demonstrated previously (Wu, H.; Zaccone, A.; Tsoutsoura, A.; Lattuada, M.; Morbidelli, M. Langmuir 2009, 25, 4715) that, for a colloid stabilized by charges from both polymer chain-end groups and adsorbed sulfonate surfactants, when the surfactant surface density reaches a certain critical value, the shear-induced gelation becomes unachievable at room temperature, even at an extremely large Peclet number, Pe = 4.6 × 104. This is due to the presence of the short-range, repulsive hydration force generated by the adsorbed surfactant. In this work, we investigate how such hydration force affects the shear-induced gelation at higher temperatures, in the range between 303 and 338 K. It is found that a colloidal system, which does not gel at room temperature in a microchannel at a fixed Pe = 3.7 × 104, does gel when temperature increases to a certain value. The critical initial particle volume fraction for the gelation to occur decreases as temperature increases. These results indicate that the effect of the hydration force on the gelation decreases as temperature increases. Moreover, we have observed that at the criticality only part of the primary particles is converted to the gel network and the effective particle volume fraction forming the gel network does not change significantly with temperature. The effective particle volume fraction is also independent of the surfactant surface coverage. Since the effective particle volume fraction corresponds to space filling requirement of a standing gel network, which is mainly related to the clusters structure, this result indicates that at a given shear rate the cluster structure does not change significantly with the surfactant surface coverage. On the other hand, since the cluster morphology is a strong function of the shear rate, we have observed that when the Peclet number is lowered from Pe = 3.7 × 104 to 1.7 × 104, the effective particle volume fraction reduces from 0.19 to 0.12 at 313 K.

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