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Issue 38, 2017
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Stabilization of foams by the combined effects of an insoluble gas species and gelation

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Abstract

Liquid foams are unstable due to aging processes such as drainage, coalescence or coarsening. Since these processes modify the foam structure, they can be a severe limitation to the elaboration of solid foams with controlled structures inherited from their liquid precursors. Such applications call for a thorough understanding of foam stabilization. Here we study how coarsening can be inhibited by the combined effects of a mixture of gas containing a species insoluble in the foaming solution and of gelation of the foaming solution. We present experiments with model ordered liquid foams and hydrogel foams. They allow us to identify the underlying physical mechanisms of stabilization and their governing parameters, namely the bubble radius Ro, the foam shear modulus G and the number ηo of insoluble trapped gas molecules per bubble. We propose a scaling model that predicts the stability diagram of an ideal monodisperse perfectly ordered foam as a function of Ro, G and ηo, in qualitative agreement with our data. We show that the domain of stable foams is governed by a characteristic elasto-capillary radius set by the ratio of surface tension to storage modulus.

Graphical abstract: Stabilization of foams by the combined effects of an insoluble gas species and gelation

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Publication details

The article was received on 27 Sep 2016, accepted on 29 Jul 2017 and first published on 31 Jul 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C6SM02191C
Citation: Soft Matter, 2017,13, 6816-6830
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    Stabilization of foams by the combined effects of an insoluble gas species and gelation

    H. Bey, F. Wintzenrieth, O. Ronsin, R. Höhler and S. Cohen-Addad, Soft Matter, 2017, 13, 6816
    DOI: 10.1039/C6SM02191C

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