Liquid Crystal Phases in Suspensions of Charged Plate-Like Particles

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift


Anisotropic interactions in colloidal suspensions have recently emerged as a route for the design of new soft materials. Nonisotropic particles can form nematic, smectic, hexatic, and columnar liquid crystals. Although the formation of these phases is well rationalized when excluded volume is solely at play, the role of electrostatic interactions still remains unclear and even less so when particles present a charge heterogeneity, for example, clays. Here, we use Monte Carlo simulations of concentrated suspensions of charged disk-like particles to reveal the role of Coulomb interactions and charge anisotropy underlying liquid crystal formation and structures. We observe a vast zoo of exotic structures, going from hexatic to columnar phases, which are shown to be controlled by the charge anisotropy. The particle volume fraction at which these phases start to form is found to decrease with increasing Coulomb interactions and charge anisotropy, which suggests a route to tune the structure of aqueous liquid crystals.


Enheter & grupper

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Teoretisk kemi
Sidor (från-till)1315-1320
TidskriftThe Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Utgåva nummer10
StatusPublished - 2012
Peer review utfördJa