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Determining the surface dilational rheology of surfactant and protein films with a droplet waveform generator

Yang, Jinlong, Yu, Kyle, Tsuji, Tomoaki, Jha, Rajeev, Zuo, Yi Y.
Journal of colloid and interface science 2019 v.537 pp. 547-553
adsorption, beta-casein, bovine serum albumin, cell membranes, droplets, emulsions, foams, rheological properties, rheology, surface area, surface tension, surfactants
Understanding rheological properties of surfactant and protein films plays a crucial role in a variety of industrial and research areas, such as food processing, cosmetics, and pharmacology. To determine the surface dilational modulus using drop shape analysis, one needs to measure the dynamic surface tension in response to a sinusoidal oscillation of the surface area of the droplet. Despite many applications of drop shape analysis in studying interfacial rheology, oscillation of the droplet surface area is usually controlled in an indirect manner. Existing methods are only capable of controlling volume oscillations of the droplet rather than its surface area. We have developed an arbitrary waveform generator (AWG) to directly oscillate the surface area of a millimeter-sized droplet in a predefined sinusoidal waveform. Here, we demonstrated the capacity of this AWG, in conjunction with constrained drop surfactometry (CDS), in studying the surface dilational rheology of adsorbed surfactant and protein films. It is found that the surface dilational modulus determined for a dilute surfactant (C12DMPO) and two protein solutions (bovine serum albumin and β-casein) revealed their adsorption mechanisms. Our methods hold promise in studying the interfacial rheology of various thin-film materials, biomembranes, foams, and emulsions.