Electrokinetic effects in catalytic platinum-insulator Janus swimmers

S. Ebbens, D. A. Gregory, G. Dunderdale, J. R. Howse, Y. Ibrahim, T. B. Liverpool, R. Golestanian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

129 Citations (Scopus)


The effect of added salt on the propulsion of Janus platinum-polystyrene colloids in hydrogen peroxide solution is studied experimentally. It is found that micromolar quantities of potassium and silver nitrate salts reduce the swimming velocity by similar amounts, while leading to significantly different effects on the overall rate of catalytic breakdown of hydrogen peroxide. It is argued that the seemingly paradoxical experimental observations could be theoretically explained by using a generalised reaction scheme that involves charged intermediates and has the topology of two nested loops.

Original languageEnglish
Article number58003
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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