Generation of particles of various sizes and shapes can be of great interest to scientists and engineers. We have developed a new and robust apparatus which can generate oblate spheroids from spherical polymer particles. A sheet of film dispersed with spherical particles was held by an eight-jaw extensional apparatus. The jaws were positioned in the edges of a regular octagon and moved radially to induce biaxial extension in an oil bath above the glass transition temperatures of the film and particles. We have demonstrated that polystyrene particles dispersed in a poly-vinyl alcohol film can be stretched to generate various shapes by this method. The microscopic studies show that the oblate spheroids obtained by this method are virtually exact spheroids without showing knife edges. Also depending on positions with regard to holders, ellipsoids and even prolate spheroids can be obtained. The method has been found to be robust in that the deformation is always reproducible regardless of film thickness and very small deformation can be applied for nearly spherical particles. We have confirmed that this method can be applied for particles of submicrons to 10 μm in diameter or even larger ones. It is expected that the spheroids and ellipsoids obtained by this method can be of help in many studies including colloids, suspension rheology, electrophoresis, printed electronics, and pharmaceutical science.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was partially supported by Mid-career Researcher Program through NRF grant funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Korea (No. 2010-0015186).
- Biaxial extension
- Eight jaws
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Polymers and Plastics
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry
- Materials Chemistry