Illuminating the Impact of Submicron Particle Size and Surface Chemistry on Interfacial Position and Pickering Emulsion Type

Emma C. Giakoumatos, Antonio Aloi, Ilja K. Voets (Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Pickering emulsions are increasingly applied in the production of medicines, cosmetics, and in food technology. To apply Pickering emulsions in a rational manner it is insufficient to examine properties solely on a macroscopic scale, as this does not elucidate heterogeneities in contact angles (θ) of individual particles, which may have a profound impact on stability and microstructure. Here, we apply the super-resolution technique iPAINT to elucidate for the first time the microscopic origins of macroscopically observed emulsion phase inversions induced by a variation in particle size and aqueous phase pH. We find θ of single carboxyl polystyrene submicron particles (CPS) significantly decreases due to increasing aqueous phase pH and particle size, respectively. Our findings confirm that θ of submicron particles are both size- and pH-dependent. Interestingly, for CPS stabilized water-octanol emulsions, this enables tuning of emulsion type from water-in-oil to oil-in-water by adjustments in either particle size or pH.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4837-4841
Number of pages5
JournalNano Letters
Volume20
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jul 2020

Keywords

  • emulsion inversion
  • interfaces
  • iPAINT
  • pH dependency
  • size dependency
  • super-resolution microscopy

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