Document Type


Subject Area(s)

Materials Chemistry


A water-soluble carbodiimide has been used to end-graft aminated poly (ethylene oxide)(PEO) chemically onto colloidal polystyrene particles. Two particle sizes (115 and 347 nm diameter) and two PEO molecular weights (112 000 and 615 000 g mol–1) were combined to give suspensions with four different ratios of polymer layer thickness to particle radius. Electrophoresis demonstrated that the PEO was grafted, not just adsorbed. Dynamic light scattering showed that the adsorbed and grafted layers had similar structures and that non-ionic surfactant perturbed the PEO configurations. Steady shear and oscillatory rheometry indicated that long-ranged polymeric forces between particles governed the variation of viscosity and storage modulus with applied stress and PS volume fraction. Hard-sphere and effective hard-sphere scaling helps rationalize the rheological behaviour in terms of the variation of the polymeric force among the different suspensions and hydrodynamic deformation of the polymer layers.