(589b) Adsorption of Surfactants at the Solid-Liquid Interface: Effect of Surface Topological Variations
AIChE Annual Meeting
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 - 9:15am to 9:30am
Adsorption of surfactants at the solid-liquid interface is key to many applications, including the removal of particulates from laundry or hard surfaces, the removal of oil from underground, deinking of plastics and the separation of minerals, e.g. copper and lead, from other species. Topological variations are important in the adsorption of surfactants given the cooperative nature of adsorption. This talk will describe recent work of our group on the top nanometer size pillars. Adsorbed surfactant thickness was higher near the edge of the pillar and decayed exponentially with distance from the edge while the amount adsorbed was less near the edge and increased exponentially with a slightly larger decay-length constant. These decay length constants of ~ 10 nm are much larger than expected given the ~2 nm size of a surfactant molecule and are also much larger than MD simulations. Surfactant adsorption is driven by entropy and known to be highly cooperative, and these large decay constants as well as the decrease in total amount adsorbed on a rough surface are a manifestation of the cooperativity of surfactant adsorption which in turn is related to the ability of the adsorbed structures to exclude water from the hydrophobic regions.