Transition from glass- to gel-like states in clay at a liquid interface
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionScientific Reports. 2016, 6 . 10.1038/srep37239
Colloidal clay in water suspensions are known to exhibit a multitude of bulk phases depending on initial colloidal concentration and ionic strength, and examples of this include repulsive Wigner colloidal glasses at low ionic strength and attractive gels at higher ionic strength due to screened electrostatic forces by the electrolyte. From confocal Raman microscopy combined with elasticity measurements, we infer that clay trapped at quasi two-dimensional interfaces between oil and water also exhibit confined glass-like or gel-like states. The results can be important for the preparation of particles stabilized colloidal emulsions or colloidal capsules, and a better understanding of this phenomenon may lead to new emulsion or encapsulation technologies.