Oil-in-water emulsification induced by ellipsoidal hematite colloids: Evidence for hydrolysis-mediated self-assembly

S. Sacanna, L. Rossi, A. P. Philipse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report on the preparation of a novel type of particle-stabilized oil-in-water emulsions. The emulsification mechanism comprises partial hydrolysis of the oil phase promoted by the alkaline surface of ellipsoidal hematite colloids stabilized by tetramethylammonium hydroxide. This mechanism yields monodisperse oil droplets with embedded single ellipsoidal particles. The emulsions, which are stable for at least several months, can be polymerized by radical initiation, to yield latex-like particles with interesting optical and magnetic properties due to their anisotropic hematite cores. Moreover, we show that complex composite core - shell colloids can be prepared by PMMA growth and silica deposition on polymerized emulsion droplets. Finally, as an example of a possible application for our system, we have measured translational and rotational diffusion coefficients of hematite-stabilized oil droplets by depolarized dynamic light scattering. The latter technique can also be employed to monitor the spontaneous emulsification in time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9974-9982
Number of pages9
Issue number20
StatePublished - Sep 25 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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