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Issue 36, 2020
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Colloidal assembly of polydisperse particle blends during drying

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Abstract

In this work, we synthesize a polydisperse aqueous colloidal system composed of small and large zwitterionic particles, as well as medium sized standard acrylic particles. By assembling these dispersions into films by drying, we show using atomic force microscopy (AFM) how their top surfaces can be mostly covered by zwitterionic groups for a wide range of evaporation rates. We probe underneath the top film surface using Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy – attenuated total reflection (ATR), observing that the content in zwitterionic particles of the film upper layer increases for faster evaporation rates. We show how polydisperse systems hold great potential to overcome the evaporation rate dependence of size segregation processes in drying colloidal blends, and we provide further insights into the assembly mechanisms involved. Polydisperse blends enhance the robustness of such processes for application in coatings and other soft products where evaporation rate can not be tuned.

Graphical abstract: Colloidal assembly of polydisperse particle blends during drying

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
30 Apr 2020
Accepted
11 Aug 2020
First published
17 Aug 2020

This article is Open Access

Soft Matter, 2020,16, 8453-8461
Article type
Paper

Colloidal assembly of polydisperse particle blends during drying

Y. Dong, N. Busatto, P. J. Roth and I. Martin-Fabiani, Soft Matter, 2020, 16, 8453
DOI: 10.1039/D0SM00785D

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