Breaking emulsions

Grant number: DP140100677 | Funding period: 2014 - 2017



Droplet coalescence is the key to breaking emulsions, that is, separating oil from water. This process underpins the recovery of crude oil and the remediation of industrial and environmental waste-waters. Through a unique and novel experimental program that simultaneously tracks drop trajectories up to the millimetre scale and drop deformations in the nanometre scale, this project aims to fill a fundamental gap in our understanding of such coalescence events. A complete theoretical model of coalescence will result, forming a predictive framework for separating emulsions to recover pure oil and water, and laying the foundation for using compound drops to tune the optical properties of surface..

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