Non-equilibrium behavior of sticky colloidal particles: beads, clusters and gelsH. Sedgwick1, K. Kroy1, 2, A. Salonen1, M.B. Robertson1, S.U. Egelhaaf1 and W.C.K. Poon1
1 School of Physics, The University of Edinburgh, Mayfield Road, Edinburgh EH9 3JZ, Scotland, UK
2 Hahn-Meitner-Institut Berlin, Glienicker Str. 100, 14109 Berlin, Germany
(Received 17 November 2004 / Published online 31 January 2005)
To understand the non-equilibrium behavior of colloidal particles with short-range attraction, we studied salt-induced aggregation of lysozyme. Optical microscopy revealed four regimes: bicontinuous texture, `beads', large aggregates, and transient gelation. The interaction of a metastable liquid-liquid binodal and an ergodic to non-ergodic transition boundary inside the equilibrium crystallization region can explain our findings.
82.70.Dd - Colloids.
87.15.Nn - Properties of solutions; aggregation and crystallization of macromolecules.
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica, Springer-Verlag 2005