Charged colloids in an aqueous mixture with a salt

Ryuichi Okamoto, Akira Onuki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


We calculate the ion and composition distributions around colloid particles in an aqueous mixture, accounting for preferential adsorption, electrostatic interaction, selective solvation among ions and polar molecules, and composition-dependent ionization. On the colloid surface, we predict a precipitation transition induced by a strong preference of hydrophilic ions to water and a prewetting transition between weak and strong adsorption and ionization. These transition lines extend far from the solvent coexistence curve in the plane of the interaction parameter χ (or the temperature) and the average solvent composition. The colloid interaction is drastically altered by these phase transitions on the surface. In particular, the interaction is much amplified on bridging of wetting layers formed above the precipitation line. Such wetting layers can either completely or partially cover the colloid surface depending on the average solvent composition.

Original languageEnglish
Article number051401
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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