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Controlling the organization of colloidal sphero-cylinders using confinement in a minority phase

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Original languageEnglish
Article number15
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Feb 2018


We demonstrate experimentally that a phase-separating host solvent can be used to organize colloidal rods into different cluster and network states. The rods are silica sphero-cylinders which are preferentially wet by the water-rich phase of an oil–water binary liquid system. By beginning with the rods dispersed in the single-fluid phase and then varying the temperature to enter the demixed regime, a precisely chosen volume of water-rich phase can be created. We then show how this can be used to create independent clusters of rods, a percolating network, a network of clusters or a system that undergoes hindered phase separation. These different modes are selected by choosing the relative volumes of the rods and the water-rich phase and by the timing of the temperature change

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