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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/S69276/01
Title: Synthesis of stimulus-responsive latexes & micro-gels & their evaluation as smart particulate emulsifiers
Principal Investigator: Armes, Professor SP
Other Investigators:
Binks, Professor B
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Unilever
Department: Chemistry
Organisation: University of Sheffield
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 01 May 2004 Ends: 31 July 2007 Value (£): 227,210
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Complex fluids & soft solids Materials Synthesis & Growth
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Food and Drink Manufacturing
Related Grants:
GR/S69283/01
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
Several new classes of particulate emulsifiers will be synthesised at U. Sussex. These include: (1) sterically-stabilised polystyrene latex, (2) stericallystabilised pH-responsive microgels and (3) speciality particles such as shell cross-linked micelles and polymer-grafted silica sols. These particles will be characterised in terms of their chemical compositions, particle size distributions and aqueous solution behaviour at U. Sussex and then provided to the U. Hull team for detailed evaluation as novel stimulus-responsive particulate ('Pickering type') emulsifiers. Based on our preliminary results obtained with sterically-stabilised polystyrene latex (for which a provisional joint Sussex/Hull patent application has been filed), we expect to be able to produce oil-inwater emulsions whose colloidal stability can be tuned according to the solution pH, temperature and salt concentration. This will enable demulsification to be achieved 'on demand' and is expected to be of generic interest to a range of industrial sectors (see Letters of Support and Beneficiaries). The U. Hull group's unrivalled expertise with classical particulate emulsifiers such as silica sols is expected to lead to a detailed understanding of the mechanism(s) of operation of these new 'smart' particulate emulsifiers, which offer a number of advantages over conventional small molecule surfactants.
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Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.shef.ac.uk