Interfacial structure of a high internal phase emulsion near a solid surface

Philip A. Reynolds, Mark J. Henderson, Stephen A. Holt, John W. White*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    14 Citations (Scopus)


    Neutron reflectivity has allowed the measurement at nanometric resolution of the structures formed when high internal phase water/oil emulsions are in contact with hydrophobic and hydrophilic surfaces prepared at planar faces of silicon blocks. The emulsion was a dispersion of micrometer sized droplets of saltwater-in-hexadecane. Contrast variation by selective deuteration of different components of the emulsion shows that at nanometric resolution an oil-rich phase is produced at the solid-emulsion interface independent of the nature of the solid surface. There is an almost complete surfactant monolayer at the hydrophilic solid face and then a hexadecane-rich layer that persists for 150 Å. Both are less pronounced for the hydrophobic surface, but not qualitatively different. The hexadecane-aqueous interfaces are highly curved with an ∼500 Å radius-compared with the micron radius of the aqueous droplets.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)9153-9157
    Number of pages5
    Issue number24
    Publication statusPublished - 26 Nov 2002


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