- A double rigidity transition rules the fate of drying colloidal drops doi link

Auteur(s): Milani M., Phou T., Ligoure C., Cipelletti L., Ramos L.(Corresp.)

(Article) Publié: Soft Matter, vol. 19 p.6968-6977 (2023)
Texte intégral en Openaccess : arxiv

Ref HAL: hal-04301565_v1
Ref Arxiv: 2307.08815
DOI: 10.1039/D3SM00625E
Ref. & Cit.: NASA ADS
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The evaporation of drops of colloidal suspensions plays an important role in numerous contexts, such as the production of powdered dairies, the synthesis of functional supraparticles, and virus and bacteria survival in aerosols or drops on surfaces. The presence of colloidal particles in the evaporating drop eventually leads to the formation of a dense shell that may undergo a shape instability. Previousworks propose that, for drops evaporating very fast, the instability occurs when the particles form a rigid porous solid, constituted of permanently aggregated particles at random close packing. To date, however, no measurements could directly test this scenario and assess whether it also applies todrops drying at lower evaporation rates, severely limiting our understanding of this phenomenon and the possibility of harnessing it in applications. Here, we combine macroscopic imaging and spaceand time-resolved measurements of the microscopic dynamics of colloidal nanoparticles in drying drops sitting on a hydrophobic surface, measuring the evolution of the thickness of the shell and the spatial distribution and mobility of the nanoparticles. We find that, above a threshold evaporationrate, the drop undergoes successively two distinct shape instabilities, invagination and cracking. While permanent aggregation of nanoparticles accompanies the second instability, as hypothesized in previous works on fast-evaporating drops, we show that the first one results from a reversible glass transition of the shell, unreported so far. We rationalize our findings and discuss their implicationsin the framework of a unified state diagram for the drying of colloidal drops sitting on a hydrophobic surface.