Shape-induced capillary interactions of colloidal particles

E. A. Van Nierop, M. A. Stijnman, Sascha Hilgenfeldt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We show that near-spherical micrometer-sized colloidal particles at an interface of two fluids experience inter-particle forces merely as a consequence of their shape-induced capillary interaction. The interaction is strong even if the deviations from sphericity are on the nm-scale, and can hardly be avoided in experiment. For particles of 2 μm radius, a deformation of 20 nm can result in an attractive potential of 2kBT at a distance of 4 particle radii. Dynamical simulations of many particles confirm that the forces lead to aggregates of dendritic or hexagonal-lattice type. The latter pattern exhibits strong herringbone-phase orientational order.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)671-677
Number of pages7
JournalEurophysics Letters
Volume72
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 15 2005

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interactions
radii
micrometers
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Shape-induced capillary interactions of colloidal particles. / Van Nierop, E. A.; Stijnman, M. A.; Hilgenfeldt, Sascha.

In: Europhysics Letters, Vol. 72, No. 4, 15.11.2005, p. 671-677.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Van Nierop, E. A. ; Stijnman, M. A. ; Hilgenfeldt, Sascha. / Shape-induced capillary interactions of colloidal particles. In: Europhysics Letters. 2005 ; Vol. 72, No. 4. pp. 671-677.
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