Location of Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes at Interface of Pickering Emulsions

by Nicholas Briggs, Javen Weston, Brian Li, Deepika Venkataramani, Clint Aichele, Jeffrey Harwell, and Steven Crossley.

Work was performed at: The University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University


Scientific Achievement

The interfacial thickness of Pickering emulsions can be tuned by changing the carbon nanotube wettability with covalent and non-covalent functionalities.

Significance and Impact

Control over the thickness of nanotubes at an oil/water interface opens the door to fine-tuning reaction selectivity by introducing a gradient in catalyst particles along an interface. Interfacial thickness also influences droplet coalescences and long term emulsion stability.

Research Details

  • Changing the carbon nanotube wettability through oxidation and addition of surfactant or polymer changed not only the emulsion properties, but also the interfacial thickness.
  • Use of carbon nanotubes and surfactant yielded emulsion droplets appearing to be cooperatively stabilized, with small regions along the oil/water interface devoid of nanotubes.

Figures: Characterization of emulsion droplets and interfaces.