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The role of curvature anisotropy in the ordering of spheres on an ellipsoid.

Authors
  • Burke, Christopher J
  • Mbanga, Badel L
  • Wei, Zengyi
  • Spicer, Patrick T
  • Atherton, Timothy J
Type
Published Article
Journal
Soft Matter
Publisher
The Royal Society of Chemistry
Publication Date
Aug 07, 2015
Volume
11
Issue
29
Pages
5872–5882
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1039/c5sm01118c
PMID: 26107404
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Non-spherical emulsion droplets can be stabilized by densely packed colloidal particles adsorbed at their surface. In order to understand the microstructure of these surface packings, the ordering of hard spheres on ellipsoidal surfaces is determined through large scale computer simulations. Defects in the packing are shown generically to occur most often in regions of strong curvature; however, the relationship between defects and curvature is nontrivial, and the distribution of defects shows secondary maxima for ellipsoids of sufficiently high aspect ratio. As with packings on spherical surfaces, additional defects beyond those required by topology are observed as chains or "scars". The transition point, however, is found to be softened by the anisotropic curvature which also partially orients the scars. A rich library of symmetric commensurate packings are identified for low particle number. We verify experimentally that ellipsoidal droplets of varying aspect ratio can be arrested by surface-adsorbed colloids.

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