Impact of granular inclusions on the phase behavior of colloidal gels

Yankai Li, John R. Royer, Jin Sun, Christopher Ness*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Colloidal gels formed from small attractive particles are commonly used in formulations to keep larger components in suspension. However, despite extensive work characterizing unfilled gels, little is known about how larger inclusions alter the phase behavior and microstructure of the colloidal system. Here we use numerical simulations to examine how larger `granular' particles can alter the gel transition phase boundaries. We find two distinct regimes depending on both the filler size and native gel structure: a `passive' regime where the filler fits into already-present voids, giving little change in the transition, and an `active' regime where the filler no longer fits in these voids and instead perturbs the native structure. In this second regime the phase boundary is controlled by an effective colloidal volume fraction given by the available free volume.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1342-1347
Number of pages6
JournalSoft Matter
Issue number7
Early online date26 Jan 2023
Publication statusPublished - 15 Feb 2023

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • cond-mat.soft


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