Interaction regimes for oppositely charged plates with multivalent counterions

Paillusson, Fabien and Trizac, Emmanuel (2011) Interaction regimes for oppositely charged plates with multivalent counterions. Physical Review E, 84 (1). ISSN 1539-3755

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Within a mean-field treatment of the interaction between two oppositely charged plates in a salt-free solution, the distance at which a transition from an attractive to a repulsive regime appears can be computed analytically. The mean-field description, however, breaks down under strong Coulombic couplings, which can be achieved at room temperature with multivalent counterions and highly charged surfaces. Making use of the contact theorem and simple physical arguments, we propose explicit expressions for the equation of state in several situations at short distances. The possibility of Bjerrum pair formation is addressed and is shown to have profound consequences on the interactions. To complete the picture, we consider the large-distance limit, from which schematic phase diagram discriminating attractive from repulsive regions can be proposed.

Keywords:Electrostatics, Strong coupling, Statistical mechanics
Subjects:F Physical Sciences > F300 Physics
F Physical Sciences > F340 Mathematical & Theoretical Physics
Divisions:College of Science > School of Mathematics and Physics
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ID Code:17976
Deposited On:09 Sep 2015 10:41

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