Long-range depletion forces induced by associating small molecules

W. Knoben, N.A.M. Besseling, M.A. Cohen Stuart

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    26 Citations (Scopus)


    This is the first report of experimental observations of depletion interactions in solutions of a (hydrogen-bonded) reversible supramolecular polymer. Depletion forces were measured directly by colloidal probe atomic force microscopy. The range of the depletion force is consistent with existing independent experimental data. The interaction can be tuned by adding monofunctional chain stoppers to the solution, a possibility which is unique to supramolecular polymers. The depletion force is shown to be strong enough to induce phase separation in a colloidal suspension.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)068301/1-068301/4
    JournalPhysical Review Letters
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2006


    • supramolecular polymers
    • equilibrium polymers
    • chain stoppers
    • surface forces
    • dispersions
    • microscope
    • micelles
    • dynamics

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