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DLVO surface forces studied in dynamic conditions

EU-funded scientists will study DLVO surface forces in dynamic conditions. DLVO is the theory that describes the force between charged surfaces interacting through a liquid medium.

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During film drainage, a number of complementary phenomena occur on the film surfaces, which affect the interaction between them. For example, the surfactant adsorption and the distribution of the surface charges upon the film surfaces are affected by the process of film thinning. The electrostatic and the van der Waals forces between molecules are therefore not homogeneously distributed upon the film surfaces and the total surface charge density varies with the film thickness. Scientists from the 'Dynamic effects in thin liquid films' (Detlif) team want to produce a concise set of equations to account for the dynamic effects on the Derjaguin, Landau, Verwey and Overbeek (DLVO) forces in thin liquid films. According to the research team, the set of equations will be solved numerically and the theory will be validated by experiments on the kinetics of foam film thinning. The Detlif scientists insist there are important shortcomings in the current state of the theory of thin liquid films. They say they can outline a way for improving and 'purifying' a number of approximations from the theory, which they claim can cause misleading interpretation of many experimental results. Hence, over a two-year period, the Detlif research team will carry out theoretical modelling and experimental validation of the film drainage theory, accounting for the dynamic effects caused by the electrical double layers. It will then focus on the theoretical and experimental investigation of the dynamic effects on film drainage originating from the van der Waals surface forces.

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