Jump to main content
Jump to site search

Issue 44, 2010
Previous Article Next Article

The influence of micelle formation on the stability of colloid surfactant mixtures

Author affiliations

Abstract

The stability of colloidal dispersions can be severely affected by the presence of surfactants. Because surfactants can adsorb at colloidal surfaces as well as form micelles, one can expect an interplay between both phenomena. Using grand-canonical coarse-grained Monte Carlo simulations on surfactant solutions confined between two surfaces, we investigate how adsorption and micelle formation affects the effective interaction between two colloidal particles, and hence, the stability of the colloidal dispersion. For solvophilic colloidal surfaces, we observe a short-ranged oscillatory solvation pressure that is hardly affected by the presence of surfactants in the system. The effective surface–surface interaction, however, reveals a decrease in solvophilic stabilization as a function of surfactant chemical potential. For solvophobic surfaces, we find that the capillary evaporation observed in a confined pure solvent, is counteracted by the addition of surfactants. Around the critical micelle concentration (CMC), the surface–surface interaction even becomes repulsive, enhancing stabilization of the colloidal dispersion. In contrast, the formation of micelles at concentrations above the CMC causes an additional depletion effect, resulting in an effective attraction, which in turn can destabilize a colloidal dispersion.

Graphical abstract: The influence of micelle formation on the stability of colloid surfactant mixtures

Back to tab navigation

Publication details

The article was received on 17 Jun 2010, accepted on 14 Sep 2010 and first published on 14 Oct 2010


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C0CP00912A
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2010,12, 14789-14797
  •   Request permissions

    The influence of micelle formation on the stability of colloid surfactant mixtures

    R. Pool and P. G. Bolhuis, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2010, 12, 14789
    DOI: 10.1039/C0CP00912A

Search articles by author

Spotlight

Advertisements