The book covers the physical side of colloid science from the individual forces acting between submicron particles suspended in a liquid through the resulting equilibrium and dynamic properties. The relevant forces include Brownian motion, electrostatic repulsion, dispersion attraction, both attraction and repulsion due to soluble polymer, and viscous forces due to relative motion between the particles and the liquid. The balance among Brownian motion and the interparticle forces decides the questions of stability and phase behavior. Imposition of external fields produces complex effects, i.e. electrokinetic phenomena (electric field), sedimentation (gravitational field), diffusion (concentration/chemical potential gradient), and non-Newtonian rheology (shear field). The treatment aims to impart a sound, quantitative understanding based on fundamental theory and experiments with well-characterized model systems. This broad grasp of the fundamentals lends insight and helps to develop the intuitive sense needed to isolate essential features of technological problems and design critical experiments. Some exposure to fluid mechanics, statistical mechanics, and electricity and magnetism is assumed, but each subject is reintroduced in a self-contained manner.
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