Microgels are soft particles individually made by cross-linked polymer
networks which are nowadays widely used as a colloidal model system
because of their swelling properties and their responsivity to external
control parameters such temperature or pH. While extensively used as
model systems in experimental, their numerical investigation lagged
behind due to the inherently complex and multiscale nature of the
particles. In this talk I will illustrate the protocol that we recently
developed to synthesize microgels in-silico, providing a realistic
description of the particles, in particular their characteristic
inhomogeneous core-corona structure and their swelling behavior. I will
also report on the calculation of their elastic properties and effective
interactions in bulk and at liquid-liquid interfaces. The numerical
results will be compared to available experiments. Our work aims to
establish a clear link between the microscopic network properties and
the resulting microgel-microgel interactions, paving the way for a
deeper understanding of the behaviour of microgel suspensions.
The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in Scotland, with registration number SC005336, VAT Registration Number GB 592 9507 00, and is acknowledged by the UK authorities as a “Recognised body” which has been granted degree awarding powers.
Any views expressed within media held on this service are those of the contributors, should not be taken as approved or endorsed by the University, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University in respect of any particular issue.