Several projects are available concerning:

  • the properties and applications of colloidal nanoparticles suspended in liquids
  • surface tension-driven flow processes

These projects are broadly motivated by their relevance to the formulation of industrial and consumer fluid products, ranging from pharmaceutical suspensions to coatings.

Projects include:

  1. Diffusiophoresis of complex particles in complex solute gradients: Diffusiophoresis is the directed motion of colloidal particles driven by a concentration gradient of solutes. Diffusiophoresis can produce fluxes that are much larger than those produced by diffusion. Projects may be experimental or computational and will consider effects of multicomponent solute interactions on particle fluxes, effects of polymer coatings on colloidal particles, or diffusiophoresis of cells or other biocolloids.
  2. Patterns produced during surfactant-driven Marangoni flows: A gradient of surface tension on a liquid surface produces a “Marangoni flow” from regions of low surface tension to high surface tension.  Instabilities during Marangoni flow may produce complex patterns, for example the formation of a “liquid curtain” when a dense solute is driven to spread over a less dense liquid.