(673a) Cryo-Electron Microscopy of the Formation of Kinetically-Stable “Nanoemulsions” by Dilution of Thermodynamically-Stable Microemulsions

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Nanoemulsions are a form of swollen micelles, typically monodisperse, dilute, and kinetically stable - that find industrial application in lubricants, pharmaceutics, and food sciences. Though the most common way to make nanoemulsions is with a microfluidizer, it is more convenient to use spontaneous emulsification, using a stable microemulsion phase as an intermediate. To obtain a desired size and a narrow polydispersity, it is important to systematically understand why the success of this route depends sensitively on the initial microemulsions and the cosurfactant composition of microemulsions. Here, we will use non-ionic surfactants and establish a model process to monitor the fast dilution of thermodynamically-stable microemulsions using Cryo-EM. This talk will discuss the characterization of the microemulsion processing at intermediate stages in the transformation from the microemulsion structure.