Effect of nano-SiO2 and surfactants on the oil-water interfacial properties

  • Ping JiangEmail author
  • Lei Zhang
  • Dengyu Tang
  • Longjie Li
  • Jijiang Ge
  • Guicai Zhang
  • Haihua Pei
Original Contribution


This study aimed to clarify the effects of different types of nano-SiO2 and surfactants on the oil-water IFT and IFR. These interfacial properties were demonstrated to be influenced by the interaction between the surfactant, the nano-SiO2 and the oil component. The interaction between nano-SiO2 and oil components and their adsorption at the crude oil-water interface were closely related to the pH values, which, on one hand, determined the amount of charge and the amount of hydroxyl groups on the surface of SiO2, and on the other hand affected the chargeability of some polar components in the crude oil. Surfactants were observed to compete with other components at the oil-water interface for absorption. When the surfactant concentration was high, the surfactant could replace the colloid and asphaltene at the oil-water interface, and the adsorption of SiO2 and crude oil components at the oil-water interface was inhibited, which resulted in a relatively low interfacial modulus. The electrostatic interaction between nano-SiO2 and cationic surfactant and that between nano-SiO2 and protonated nonionic surfactant could contribute to the formation of composite films at the interface, and thus higher interfacial dilatational modulus, whereas the mutual electrostatic repulsion between nano-SiO2 and the anionic surfactant would promote one of the two to move towards the interface. Therefore, it could be inferred that different oil-water systems with different interfacial properties could be constructed by adjusting the pH value of the nano-SiO2 solution, the surfactant type, the molar ratio of the surfactant to the nano-SiO2, and the oil phase composition.


Interfacial tension Surfactant Crude oil Dilational rheology Nanoparticles 


Funding information

The study is financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51474234) and the Fok Ying Tung Education Foundation (No.151049) and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (No.19CX02017A).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


  1. 1.
    Pashley RM, Karaman ME (2004) Applied colloid and surface chemistry, 1st. Wiley, New York Chap.5CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Vincent AN, Gert F (2001) Marangoni flow driven instabilities and marginal regeneration. J Colloid Interface Sci 234:162–167CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bibette J (2005) Interface:their role in foam and emulsion behavior. Curr Opin Colloid Interface Sci 5:176–181Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Klitzing RV, Müller HJ (2002) Film stability control. Curr Opin Colloid Interface Sci 7:42–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Capek I (2004) Degradation of kinetically-satble o/w emulsion. Adv Colloid Interf Sci 107:125–155CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Langevin D (2000) Interfacial rheology on foam and emulsion properties. Adv Colloid Interface Sci 88:209–222CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Santini E, Liggieri L, Sacca L, Clausse D, Ravera F (2007) Interfacial rheology of Span 80 adsorbed layers at paraffin oil-water interface and correlation with the corresponding emulsion properties. Colloids Surface A 309:270–279CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Tambe DE, Sharma MM (1995) Factors controlling the stability of colloid-stabilized emulsions: III. Measurements of the rheological properties of colloid-laden interfaces. J Colloid Interface Sci 171:456–462CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Okubo T (1995) Surface tensin of structured colloidal suspensions of polystyrene and silica spheres at the air-water interface. J Colloid Interface Sci 171:55–62CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Vignati E, Piazza R, Lockhart TP (2003) Pickering emulsions: interfacial tension, colloidal layer morphology, and trapped-particle. Langmuir 19:6650–6656CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Schulman JH, Leja J (1954) Control of contact angles at the oil-water-splid interfaces. Emulsion stabilized by solid particles (BaSO4)[J]. Trans Faraday Soc 50:598–605CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Tsugita A, Takemoto S, Mori K, Yoneya T, Otani Y (1983) Studies on O/W emulsions stabilized with insoluble montmorillonite-organic complexes[J]. J Colloid Interface Sci 95:551–560CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Tambe DE, Sharma MM (1994) The effect of colloidal particles on fluid-fluid interfacial properties and emulsion stability [J]. Adv Colloid Interf Sci 52:1–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Binks BP, Rodrigues JA, Frith WJ (2007) Synergistic interaction in emulsions stabilized by a mixture of silica nanoparticles and cationic surfactant[J]. Langmuir 23:3626–3636CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Binks BP, Rodrigues JA (2007) Enhanced stabilization of emulsions due to surfactant-induced nanoparticle flocculation[J]. Langmuir 23:7436–7439CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Whitby CP, Fornasiero D, Ralston J (2008) Effect of oil soluble surfactant in emulsions stabilized by clay particles[J]. J Colloid Interface Sci 323:410–419CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Binks BP, Rodrigues JA (2007) Double inversion of emulsions by using nanoparticles and a di-chain surface[J]. Angew Chen Int Ed 46:5389–5392CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Binks BP, Rodrigues JA (2009) Influence of surfactant structure on the double inversion of emulsions in the presence of nanoparticles[J]. Colloid Surf A Physicochem Eng Asp 345:195–201CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Cui ZG, Yang LL, Cui YZ et al (2009) Effects of surfactant structure on the phase inversion of emulsions stabilized by mixtures of silica nanoparticles and cationic surfaciant[J]. LangmuirGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Cui ZG, Yang LL, Cui YZ et al (2008) Double phase invension of emulsions stabilized by a mixture of CaCO3 nanoparticles and sodium dodecyl sulphate[J]. Colloid Surf A Physicochem Eng Asp 329:67–74CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Wang J, Yang F, Li CF, Liu S, Sun D (2008) Double phase inversion of emulsions containing layered double hydroxide particles induced by adsorption of sodium dodecyl sulfate[J]. Langmuir 24:10054–10061CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Cui ZG, Cui CF, Zhu Y et al (2011) Multiple phase inversion of emulsions stabilized by in situ surface activation of CaCO3 nanoparticles via adsorption of fatty acids[J]. Langmuir 28:314–320CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Midmore BR (1998) Synergy between silica and polyoxyethylene surfactants in the formation of O/W emulsions[J]. Colloids Surface A Physicochem Eng Asp 145:133–143CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Gosa KL, Uricanu V (2002) Emulsions stabilized with PEO-PPO-PEO block copolymers and silica[J]. Colloids Surface A Physicochem Eng Asp 197:257–269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Li CF, Zhang SY, Wang J et al (2008) Interactions between Brij suffactants and laponite nanoparticles and emulsions stabilized by their mixtures[J]. Acta Chim Sin 66:2313–2320Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Wang J, Yang F, Tan JJ, Liu G, Xu J, Sun D (2010) Pickering emulsions stabilized by a lipophilic surfactant and hydrophilic platelike particles[J]. Langmuir 26:5397–5404CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Legrand J, Chamerois M, Placin F, Poirier JE, Bibette J, Leal-Calderon F (2005) Solid colloidal particles inducing coalescence in bitumen-in-water emulsions[J]. Langmuir 21:64–70CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Thijssen JHJ, Schofield AB, Clegg PS (2011) How do(fluorescent)surfactants affect particle-stabilized emulsions?[J]. Soft Matter 7:7965–7968CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Tigges B, Dederichs T, Moeller M et al (2010) Interfacial properties of emulsions stabilized with surfactant and nonsurfactant coated boehmite nanoparticles[J]. Langmuir 26:17913–17918CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Pichot R, Spyropoulos F, Norton IT (2010) O/W emulsions stabilized by both low molecular weight surfactants and colloidal particles: the effect of surfactant type and concentration[J]. J Colloid Interface Sci 352:128–135CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Mackie AR, Gunning AP, Wilde PJ, Morris VJ (2000) Competitive displacement of β-lactoglobulin from the air/water interface by sodium dodecyl sulfate[J]. Langmuir 16:8176–8181CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Mackie AR, Gunning AP, Wilde PJ, Morris VJ (2000) Orogenic displacement of protein from the air/water interface[J]. Langmuir 16:2242–2247CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Wilde P, Mackie A, Husband F, Gunning P, Morris V (2004) Protein and emulsifiers at liquid interfaces[J]. Adv Colloid Interf Sci 108–109:63–71CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Vashisth C, Whitby CP, Fornasiero D, Ralston J (2010) Interfacial displacement of nanoparticles by surfactant molecules in emulsions[J]. J Colloid Interface Sci 349:537–543CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Bashforth F, Adams C (1883) An attempt to test the theories of capillary action. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Liggieri L, Passerone A (1989) An automatic technique for measuring the surface tension of liquid metals. High Temp Technol 7:82–86CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Li JB, Kretzschmar G, Miller R, Möhwald H (1999) Viscoelasticity of phospholipid layers at different fluid interfaces. Colloids Surf A 149:491–497CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Jiang P, Li N, Ge J, Zhang G, Wang Y, Chen L, Zhang L (2014) Efficiency of a sulfobetaine-type surfactant on lowering IFT at crude oil–formation water interface. Colloids Surfaces A 443:141–148CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Miller R, Wfistneck R, Krfigel J et al (1996) Dilational and shear rheology of adsorption layers at liquid interfaces. Colloids Surfaces A Physicochem Eng Asp 111:75–118CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Williams A, Janssen JJM, Prins A (1997) Behavior of droplets in simple shear flow in the presence of a protein emulsifier. Colloids Surfaces A Physicochem Eng Asp 125:189–200CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    Orozco JPP, Beristain CI, Paredes GE et al (2004) Interfacial shear rheology of interacting carbohydrate at the water-oil interface using an adapted conventional rheometer. Carbohydr Polym 57:45–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Ravera F, Ferrari M, Santini E, Liggieri L (2005) Interface of surface process on the dilational visco-elasticity of surfactant solutions. Adv Colloid Interf Sci 117:75–100CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    Ivanov IB, Danov KD, Ananthapadmanabhan KP, Lips A (2005) Interfacial rheology of adsorbed layers with surface reaction: on the origin of the dilatational surface viscosity. Adv Colloid Interf Sci 114-115:61–92CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Santini E, Liggieri L, Sacca L (2007) Span 80 absorbed layers at paraffin oil-water interface and correlation with the corresponding emulsion properties. Colloid Surface A 309:270–279CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    Monteux C, Fuller GG, Bergeron V (2004) Shear and dilational surface rheology of oppositely charged polyelectrilyte/surfactant microgels adsorbed at the air-water interface. Influence on foam stability. J Phys Chem B 108(42):16473–16482CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. 46.
    Noskov BA, Akentiev AV, Bilibin AY, Zorin IM, Miller R (2003) Dilational surface viscoelasticity of polymer solutions. Adv Colloid Interf Sci 104(1–3):245–271CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ping Jiang
    • 1
    Email author
  • Lei Zhang
    • 1
  • Dengyu Tang
    • 1
  • Longjie Li
    • 1
  • Jijiang Ge
    • 1
  • Guicai Zhang
    • 1
  • Haihua Pei
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Petroleum EngineeringChina University of Petroleum (East China)QingdaoChina

Personalised recommendations