Tuning colloidal gels by electric and magnetic fields


Study the effects of electric and magnetic fields on the structure and final properties of colloidal gels. Different field configurations will be studied including triaxial non-stationary fields under unconventional flow kinematics. Combined rheo-confocal/scattering experiments and simulations will probe structural changes and link with the mechanical response


Task 3.1: Model magneto and electrorheological systems (M3-32)

Model magnetorheological systems will consist on 3D colloidal gels based on magnetic latex while model electrorheological systems of 1D aluminium oxide (Al2O3) or titane oxide (TiO2) nanoparticle gels. Unbalanced triaxial nonstationary fields will be used for the self-assembly of magnetic particles. Alternating electric fields will generate 1D Al2O3 or TiO2 structures.

Task 3.2: Model gels with electric/magnetically stimulated inclusions (M6-42)

Model systems identified in WP1 will be seeded with electric/magnetic stimulated inclusions to evaluate the influence of external electric/magnetic fields on microstructure and rheological properties under superposition flows. Field-induced fluidization of glassy/shear thickening materials, directed phase separation and the formation of exotic anisotropic mesostructures will be investigated. High-speed confocal video-microscopy, scattering methods, 3D micro-PIV, and rheo-OCT will be used together with dedicated particle-level simulations.

Task 3.3: Industrial systems tuned by electric and magnetic fields (M9-42)

Colloidal gels will be exploited in 3 industrial applications: magnetic 3D structures as templates for directed cell proliferation/external stimulation in bioprinting and tissue engineering; rationally designed magnetic clusters with controlled size/shape in magnetic hyperthermia for cancer treatment; and high-surface-area 1D nanostructures for battery electrolytes.