Soft particles display highly versatile properties with respect to hard colloids and even more so at fluid-fluid interfaces. In particular, microgels, consisting of a cross-linked polymer network, are able to deform and flatten upon adsorption at the interface due to the balance between surface tension and internal elasticity. Despite the existence of experimental results, a detailed theoretical understanding of this phenomenon is still lacking due to the absence of appropriate microscopic models. In this work, we propose an advanced modeling of microgels at a flat water/oil interface. The model builds on a realistic description of the internal polymeric architecture and single-particle properties of the microgel and is able to reproduce its experimentally observed shape at the interface. Complementing molecular dynamics simulations with in situ cryo-electron microscopy experiments and atomic force microscopy imaging after Langmuir-Blodgett deposition, we compare the morphology of the microgels for different values of the cross-linking ratios. Our model allows for a systematic microscopic investigation of soft particles at fluid interfaces, which is essential to develop predictive power for the use of microgels in a broad range of applications, including the stabilization of smart emulsions and the versatile patterning of surfaces.

Microgels Adsorbed at Liquid-Liquid Interfaces: A Joint Numerical and Experimental Study / Camerin, Fabrizio; Fernández-Rodríguez, Miguel Ángel; Rovigatti, Lorenzo; Antonopoulou, Maria-Nefeli; Gnan, Nicoletta; Ninarello, Andrea; Isa, Lucio; Zaccarelli, Emanuela. - In: ACS NANO. - ISSN 1936-0851. - 13:4(2019), pp. 4548-4559. [10.1021/acsnano.9b00390]

Microgels Adsorbed at Liquid-Liquid Interfaces: A Joint Numerical and Experimental Study

Camerin, Fabrizio
Primo
Writing – Original Draft Preparation
;
Rovigatti, Lorenzo;Gnan, Nicoletta;Zaccarelli, Emanuela
2019

Abstract

Soft particles display highly versatile properties with respect to hard colloids and even more so at fluid-fluid interfaces. In particular, microgels, consisting of a cross-linked polymer network, are able to deform and flatten upon adsorption at the interface due to the balance between surface tension and internal elasticity. Despite the existence of experimental results, a detailed theoretical understanding of this phenomenon is still lacking due to the absence of appropriate microscopic models. In this work, we propose an advanced modeling of microgels at a flat water/oil interface. The model builds on a realistic description of the internal polymeric architecture and single-particle properties of the microgel and is able to reproduce its experimentally observed shape at the interface. Complementing molecular dynamics simulations with in situ cryo-electron microscopy experiments and atomic force microscopy imaging after Langmuir-Blodgett deposition, we compare the morphology of the microgels for different values of the cross-linking ratios. Our model allows for a systematic microscopic investigation of soft particles at fluid interfaces, which is essential to develop predictive power for the use of microgels in a broad range of applications, including the stabilization of smart emulsions and the versatile patterning of surfaces.
AFM; cryo-SEM; interface; microgels; modeling; polymer networks; Materials Science (all); Engineering (all); Physics and Astronomy (all)
01 Pubblicazione su rivista::01a Articolo in rivista
Microgels Adsorbed at Liquid-Liquid Interfaces: A Joint Numerical and Experimental Study / Camerin, Fabrizio; Fernández-Rodríguez, Miguel Ángel; Rovigatti, Lorenzo; Antonopoulou, Maria-Nefeli; Gnan, Nicoletta; Ninarello, Andrea; Isa, Lucio; Zaccarelli, Emanuela. - In: ACS NANO. - ISSN 1936-0851. - 13:4(2019), pp. 4548-4559. [10.1021/acsnano.9b00390]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11573/1268442
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