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Open Access Nano Express

Changes in the nanoparticle aggregation rate due to the additional effect of electrostatic and magnetic forces on mass transport coefficients

Dana Rosická* and Jan Šembera

Author Affiliations

Technical University of Liberec, Institute of Novel Technologies and Applied Informatics, Liberec 460 01, Czech Republic

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2013, 8:20  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-8-20

Published: 10 January 2013

Abstract

The need may arise to be able to simulate the migration of groundwater nanoparticles through the ground. Transportation velocities of nanoparticles are different from that of water and depend on many processes that occur during migration. Unstable nanoparticles, such as zero-valent iron nanoparticles, are especially slowed down by aggregation between them. The aggregation occurs when attracting forces outweigh repulsive forces between the particles. In the case of iron nanoparticles that are used for remediation, magnetic forces between particles contribute to attractive forces and nanoparticles aggregate rapidly. This paper describes the addition of attractive magnetic forces and repulsive electrostatic forces between particles (by ‘particle’, we mean both single nanoparticles and created aggregates) into a basic model of aggregation which is commonly used. This model is created on the basis of the flow of particles in the proximity of observed particles that gives the rate of aggregation of the observed particle. By using a limit distance that has been described in our previous work, the flow of particles around one particle is observed in larger spacing between the particles. Attractive magnetic forces between particles draw the particles into closer proximity and result in aggregation. This model fits more closely with rapid aggregation which occurs between magnetic nanoparticles.

Keywords:
Magnetic nanoparticles; Aggregation; Mass transport coefficient; Limit distance