Wetting Transition in a solid/water/oil system mediated by ion and surfactant -adsorption induced interface interactions

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) processes rely upon wettability alteration in sandstone rock (silica and clay materials). In this study, by changing the salt (NaCl or CaCl2), concentration (1 mM to 1000 mM) and pH, we observe wetting transition on mica in an oil (n-Decane) phase. At all pH and concentration of NaCl, contact angles below macroscopic detection limit (around 1.50) are observed, implying complete wetting. For CaCl2, we observe finite contact angles (up to 100) above a critical concentration of 50 mM. When we add polar amphiphilic molecules (stearic acid) in n-Decane, this wetting transition is more pronounced since for CaCl2 solution, contact angles are as high as 700. In presence of stearic acid, dynamic effects such as autophobing and self-propelling of drops on mica are also observed.

We explain such wetting transition with an ion-adsorption model, causing surface charge reversal at mica/water interface for divalent cations. This proposition is supported with experimental calculations of zeta potential. Based on these values, we calculate surface charge and subsequently, the interaction potential between mica/water and oil/water interfaces. The minimum of this potential corresponds to the film thickness of aqueous phase, which we confirm with ellipsometry.
Period31 Mar 2014
Event titleDPG Frühjahrstagung 2014 Dresden: (DPG Spring Meeting)
Event typeConference
OrganiserDeutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft
LocationDresden, GermanyShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational