Spontaneous vesicle formation by mixed surfactants

  • S. A. Safran
  • F. C. MacKintosh
  • P. A. Pincus
  • D. A. Andelman
Part of the Progress in Colloid & Polymer Science book series (PROGCOLLOID, volume 84)


Although single surfactants rarely form vesicles spontaneously, mixtures of two surfactants can lead to spontaneous vesicle formation. By considering the curvature elasticity of the surfactant bilayer, we show theoretically how the energetic stabilization of mixed vesicles can occur. Interactions between the two species (of the proper sign and magnitude) are crucial to stabilizing these vesicles. These interactions lead to composition asymmetries and effective spontaneous curvatures of the inner and outer layers that are of equal and opposite signs.

Key words

Vesicle surfactant selfassociation 


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Copyright information

© Dr. Dietrich Steinkopff Verlag GmbH & Co. KG 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. A. Safran
    • 1
    • 4
  • F. C. MacKintosh
    • 1
  • P. A. Pincus
    • 2
  • D. A. Andelman
    • 3
  1. 1.Exxon Research and EngineeringAnnandaleUSA
  2. 2.Materials DepartmentUniversity of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA
  3. 3.Raymond and Beverly Sackler Faculty of Exact Sciences, School of Physics and AstronomyTel Aviv UniversityRamat AvivIsrael
  4. 4.Department of Polymer ResearchWeizmann InstituteRehovotIsrael

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