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Reverse Micelle Microstructural Transformations Induced by Surfactant Molecular Structure, Concentration, and Temperature

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We have investigated the microstructural transformations of nonionic surfactant reverse micelles induced by surfactant molecular architecture, surfactant concentration, and temperature in nonaqueous media. The investigations were based on small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and rheometry techniques. Polyglycerol polyoleic acid esters spontaneously self-assembled into reverse micelle in n-decane under ambient conditions, whose shape, size, and internal structure could be controlled by the surfactant molecular architecture, concentration, and temperature. The maximum size of the micelles was found to increase with an increase in the hydrophilic headgroup size of the surfactant. On the other hand, an opposite trend was observed with an increase in the number of oleate chain per surfactant molecules, which was well supported by rheology data; viscosity decreased with the number of oleate chain per surfactant molecule. The SAXS and rheology data have shown a clear evidence of one dimensional micellar growth with increase in the surfactant concentration. The relative viscosity, η r, of the reverse micelle exhibited steeper concentration dependence behavior than those predicted for a dispersion of spherical particles based on the Krieger–Dougherty relation which provided a clear evidence of the presence of elongated micelles at higher concentration. An ellipsoidal prolate-to-sphere type transition was observed upon heating.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2011-09-01

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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