A Confocal Rheology Study of Network Stabilized Bicontinuous Emulsion Gels

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In this thesis, a new bicontinuous soft material was discovered. Bicontinuous intraphase jammed emulsion gels (bipjels) were formed from critical mixtures of water and 2,6-lutidine and were stabilized with commercially produced alumina coated silica nanoparticles. Using a novel confocal rheology platform, the microstructure and rheological properties of the bipjels were simultaneously studied and provided key insights into the morphology and stability of the new materials during their formation, aging, and cooling. Through varying the concentration of the nanoparticles and the initial mixing energy delivered to the bipjel mixtures, the final morphologies could be tuned. A curvature analysis was performed over the aging of the different biPjel samples showing traits of optimal hyperbolic surfaces. The bipjels did not lose their strength upon cooling and liquids remixing which bodes well for their future development as an advanced material. Bipjels represent a new gateway for understanding the role non-interfacially localized particles play in stabilizing non-equilibrium morphologies.
bijel, cocontinuous structures, confocal rheology, colloidal gel, spinodal decomposition, curvature analysis
Malone, R. A. (2018). A Confocal Rheology Study of Network Stabilized Bicontinuous Emulsion Gels (Master's thesis, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada). Retrieved from https://prism.ucalgary.ca. doi:10.11575/PRISM/32862