Cooperative Rearrangement Regions and Dynamical Heterogeneities in Colloidal Glasses with Attractive Versus Repulsive Interactions

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Cooperative Rearrangement Regions and Dynamical Heterogeneities in Colloidal Glasses with Attractive Versus Repulsive Interactions

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Abstract

Water-lutidine mixtures permit the interparticle potentials of colloidal particles suspended therein to be tuned, in situ, from repulsive to attractive. We employ these systems to directly elucidate the effects of interparticle potential on glass dynamics in experimental samples composed of the same particles at the same packing fractions. Cooperative rearrangement regions (CRRs) and heterogeneous dynamics are observed in both types of glasses. Compared to repulsive glasses, the attractive glass dynamics are found to be heterogeneous over a wider range of time and length scales, and its CRRs involve more particles. Additionally, the CRRs are observed to be stringlike structures in repulsive glasses and compact structures in attractive glasses. Thus, the experiments demonstrate explicitly that glassy dynamics can depend on the sign of the interparticle interaction.
PRL 107 208303 (2011)
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Authors

Zexin Zhang, Peter J. Yunker, Piotr Habdas, and A. G. Yodh

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