Reversible and irreversible flow-induced phase transitions in micellar solutions

Mukund Vasudevan, Eric Buse, Hare Krishna, Ramki Kalyanaraman, Amy Shen, Bamin Khomami, Radhakrishna Sureshkumar

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


It is well known that rodlike/wormlike micelles can self-organize under flow to form viscoelastic gel phases. Flow-induced structure (FIS) formation is typically accompanied by an enhancement in the shear viscosity. While configurational dynamics of and collisions between micelles in flow and electrostatic inter-micelle interactions are recognized as the key factors that influence such phase transitions, there are no universally applicable criteria for the onset strain rate as function of salt/surfactant concentration. Further, FIS formation is generally considered reversible, i.e., the structure disintegrates quickly upon flow cessation. In this work, first, we examine the effect of salt concentration on the critical strain rate for CTAB/NaSal solutions of rodlike micelles and show that a "self-similar" phase transition regime, characterized by a constant critical strain, exists. Second, we show that under strong (elongational) flow conditions, the phase transition is irreversible, leading to the formation of permanent nanogels that are stable long after the flow is stopped. Atomic force microscopy shows that the gel phase obtained under strong flow conditions consists of highly aligned micelles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe XVth International Congress on Rheology - The Society of Rheology 80th Annual Meeting
Number of pages3
StatePublished - 2008
Event15th International Congress on Rheology - Monterey, CA, United States
Duration: Aug 3 2008Aug 8 2008

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616


Other15th International Congress on Rheology
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityMonterey, CA


  • Flow-induced structure
  • Micelle
  • Microfluidics
  • Self-assembly
  • Shear-thickening

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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