Interaction Forces between Colloidal Particles in Liquid: Theory and Experiment

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  • [1] Yuncheng Liang, Nidal Hilal, Paul Langston, and Victor Starov, Advances in Colloid and Interface Science 134-135, 151-166 (2007).
  • Keywords: van der Waals Forces, Electric Double Layer Forces, Solvation Forces, Hydrophobic Forces, Steric Forces, Atomic Force Microscopy, Surface Forces Apparatus


This is a review article summarizing the major findings and contributions of 158 publications. Many of the major contributions to this field were made very recently. This review article includes information on the theories of colloidal interaction forces, experiments testing them, and the historical development/breakthroughs in the field.

Timeline: 1941 Derjaguin and Landau publish first big paper leading to DLVO theory 1948 Verwey and Overbeek publish second big paper contributing to DLVO theory 1956 Lifshitz Theory 1964 Derjaguin experimental discovery of an extra repulsive force 1978 First accurate macroscopic surface measurements Israelachivili and Adams (SFA) 1991 AFM adapted for a colloidal particle tapping on a solid surface

5 forces: 1) van der Waals Forces

Equation 1 Interaction energy between two spheres:


<math>A_H</math>= Hamaker Constant <math>a</math>= Sphere Radius <math>D=</math> Interparticle Distance

2) Electric Double Layer Forces

<math>V_R=\frac{128\pi a_1 a_2 n_\infty kT}{(a_1+a_2)\kappa^2} \gamma_1 \gamma_2 e^{(-\kappa h)}</math>

3) Solvation Forces

4) Hydrophobic Forces

5) Steric Forces

The second half of this review article discusses experimental evidence for or against the above five forces. There are still open questions in this field because some of the experimental evidence does not agree with the current theories.

Soft Matter Details

Surface Properties:

Chemistry/soft matter, colloids, foams, stabilization

Experimental Methods:



How much does knowing the historical development help us in doing current science?