Effects of Polyacrylic Acid Concentration on Its Conformation and on the Stability of Alumina Suspensions

  • Kuiri F. Tjipangandjara
  • P. Somasundaran


Effect of polyacrylic acid concentration on the stability of alumina suspension is studied here and interpreted on the basis of the conformation of the adsorbed polyacrylic species. The conformation of polyacrylic acid species was monitored using fluorescence technique with pyrene as probe. By allowing polyacrylic acid first to adsorb on alumina in coiled form at low pH and then raising the pH, a drastic increase in flocculation was seen at low polyacrylic concentrations, while dispersion of the slurry was observed at higher concentrations. Analysis of the slurry showed that the adsorbed polyacrylic acid underwent concentration-dependent conformational changes which affected the stability of the slurry. At low concentrations conformation of the adsorbed polyacrylic acid transformed from coiled to stretched, resulted in better bridging of the extended polymer chain between the particles, and enhanced flocculation. At higher polymer concentrations such conformational transition was absent because of crowding of the polymer chains on the particles; as a result, the suspension remained dispersed. This study shows for the first time how correlation of adsorbed polymer configuration, determined by fluorescence, with stabilization can be utilized to obtain better dispersion or flocculation of colloidal suspensions.


Zeta Potential Polyacrylic Acid Coiled Conformation Alumina Suspension Polymer Conformation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    D.H. Napper, Polymeric Stabilization of Colloidal Dispersion, Academic Press, New York (1983).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    J.Th.G. Overbeek in: Surfaces and Coatings Related to Paper and Wood, Syracuse University Press, New York, (1967).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    B.A. Stewart, Soil Condition, Soil Condition Sci. Soc. Of America, Madison, (1973).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    E. Luck, et al. in: Ullmann’s Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry, All, Gerhartz Wolfgang ed., VCH Publishers, New York, (1988).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    B.M. Moudgiland P. Somasundaran, Flocculation, Sedimentation and Consolidation, Proceeding of Engineering Foundation Conference, Sea Island, Georgia, USA, (1985).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    J. Gregory in: Scientific Basis of Flocculation, K.J. Ives, ed., Sijthoft & Noorghoff, Rockville, MD, USA, (1978).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    W.F. Linke and R.B. Booth, Trans. AIME, 217, 364–367 (1958).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Joseph 3rd Cesarano, I.A. Aksay and A. Bleier, Journal of American Ceramic Society, 71, p250 (1988).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    P. Somasundaran, Y.H.C. Wang and S. Acar in: Future Trends in Polymer Science and Techlinology, ITPR, CNR, Naples, (1984).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    P. Somasundaran in: 13t Int. Mineral Proc. Congress, Part A, J. Laskowski ed., Elsevier, Amsterdam, (1981).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    A.F. Hollander, P. Somasundaran and C.C. Gryte in: Adsorption from Aqueous Solutions, P.H. Tewari ed, Plenum, New York, (1981).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    T.W. Healy and V.K. La Mer, Journal of Physical Chem., 66, 1935, (1962).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    T. Sato, and R. Ruch in: Stabilization of Colloidal Dispersions by Polymer Adsorption, Marcel Dekker. Inc. New York, (1980).Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    P.A. Williams et al., in: The effect of Polymer on Dispersion Properties, Th.F. Tadros ed., Academic Press, (1983).Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Th.F. Tadros in: The effect of Polymer on Dispersion Properties, Th.F. Tadros ed., Academic Press, (1981).Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Kuiri F. Tjipangandjara, P. Somasundaran, Y-B. Huang and N.J. Turro, accepted for publications in Colloids and Surfaces, (1989)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    P. Chandar, P. Somasundaran, N.J. Turro, and K.C. Waterman, Langmuir, 3, p298, (1987).Google Scholar
  18. 18. (a)
    N.J. Turro, and K.S. Arora, Polymer, 27, p783, (1986).; (b) N.J. Turro and O. Tusuneo, J. Phys. Chem., 86, p277, (1982)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Total Organic Carbon System Manual, by Rosemont Analytical, Santa Clara, California, (1988).Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    J.E. Gebhardt and D.W. Fuerstenau, Colloids and Surf., 7, p231, (1983).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Elsevier Science Publishing Co., Inc. 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kuiri F. Tjipangandjara
    • 1
  • P. Somasundaran
    • 1
  1. 1.Langmuir Center for Colloids and Interfaces, Henry Krumb School of MinesColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

Personalised recommendations