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(2017) Langmuir, 33 (38), pp. 10051-10060.

Fast, Robust Evaluation of the Equation of State of Suspensions of Charge-Stabilized Colloidal Spheres

Hallez, Y., Meireles, M.


- Increasing demand is appearing for the fast, robust prediction of the equation of state of colloidal suspensions, notably with a view to using it as input data to calculate transport coefficients in complex flow solvers. This is also of interest in rheological studies, industrial screening tests of new formulations, and the real-time interpretation of osmotic compression experiments, for example. For charge-stabilized spherical particles, the osmotic pressure can be computed with standard liquid theories. However, this calculation can sometimes be lengthy and/or unstable under some physicochemical conditions, a drawback that precludes its use in multiscale flow simulators. As a simple, fast, and robust replacement, the literature reports estimations of the osmotic pressure that have been built by adding the Carnahan-Starling and the cell model pressures (CSCM model). The first contribution is intended to account for colloid-colloid contacts, and the second, for electrostatic effects.
- This approximation has not yet been thoroughly tested. In this work, the CSCM is evaluated by comparison with data from experiments on silica particles, Monte Carlo simulations, and solutions of the accurate Rogers-Young integral equation scheme with a hard-sphere Yukawa potential obtained from the extrapolated point-charge renormalization method for a wide range of volume fractions, surface charge densities, and interaction ranges. We find that the CSCM is indeed perfectly adequate in the electrostatically concentrated regime, where it can be used from vanishingly small to high surface charge because there is error cancellation between the Carnahan-Starling and cell model contributions at intermediate charge. The CSCM is thus a nice extension of the cell model to liquid-like dense suspensions, which should find application in the domains mentioned above. However, it fails for dilute suspensions with strong electrostatics. In this case, we show that, and explain why, perturbation methods and the rescaled mean spherical approximation are good alternatives in terms of precision, ease of implementation, computational cost, and robustness. © 2017 American Chemical Society.