NMR velocimetry studies of the steady-shear rheology of a concentrated hard-sphere colloidal system
Journal article, 2005
NMR velocimetry has been used to observe the steady-shear rheological behaviour of a concentrated suspension of hard-sphere like 370 nm diameter PMMA core-shell latex particles at the volume fraction Φ = 0.46, the liquid core of the spheres rendering possible NMR observation of the particles themselves. Rheological measurements in a cone-and-plate geometry indicate that when aged (i.e. left at rest for two weeks), the material exhibits yield stress behaviour at very low shear rates. For shear rates greater than 1 s - 1 a transition to liquid-like behaviour was observed, leading to a rejuvenated fluid state which exhibits shear-thinning behaviour over a wide range of shear rates. A similar yield stress behaviour was reflected in NMR velocimetry measurements in a Couette geometry, where the solid-to liquid transition could be clearly observed. Under steady-state flow, the fluid state inside the radius at which yield stress was observed, exhibited shear-thinning behaviour with a power law exponent n slowly approaching unity with increasing shear rate. This behaviour has some similarities with a model of Derec et al. in which aging and rejuvenation effects compete. Substantial wall slip was observed both at the inner and at the outer wall, an effect which disappeared as the shear rate was increased. No radial particle migration from the high-shear region at the inner wall was observed.