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Anisotropic viscoelastic phase separation in polydisperse hard rods: non-sticky gelation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3415-3420
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume117
Issue number7
Early online date31 Jan 2020
DOIs
DateAccepted/In press - 31 Dec 2019
DateE-pub ahead of print - 31 Jan 2020
DatePublished (current) - 18 Feb 2020

Abstract

Spinodal demixing into two phases having very different viscosities leads to viscoelastic networks, i.e. gels, usually as a result of attractive particle interactions. Here, however, we demonstrate demixing in a colloidal system of polydisperse rod-like clay particles that is driven by particle repulsions instead. One of the phases is a nematic liquid crystal with a highly anisotropic viscosity, allowing flow along the director but suppressing it in other directions. This phase coexists with a dilute isotropic phase. Real-space analysis and molecular dynamics simulations both reveal a long-lived network structure that is locally anisotropic yet macroscopically isotropic. We show that our system exhibits the characteristics of colloidal gelation and conclude that it represents a new class of material, non-sticky gels.

    Research areas

  • liquid crystals, gels, colloidal rods

Documents

Documents

  • Full-text PDF (accepted author manuscript)

    Rights statement: This is the author accepted manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via National Academy of Sciences at https://www.pnas.org/content/early/2020/01/30/1909357117 . Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Accepted author manuscript, 31.3 MB, PDF document

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  • Supplementary information PDF

    Accepted author manuscript, 1.6 MB, PDF document

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