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Coupled elasticity in soft solid foams

Abstract : Elasticity of soft materials can be greatly influenced by the presence of air bubbles. Such a capillary effect is expected for a wide range of materials, from polymer gels to concentrated emulsions and colloidal suspensions. Whereas experimental results and theory exist for describing the elasto-capillary behavior of bubbly materials (i.e. with moderate gas volume fractions), foamy systems still require a dedicated study in order to increase our understanding of elasticity in aerated materials over the full range of gas volume fractions. Here we elaborate well-controlled foams with concentrated emulsion and we measure their shear elastic modulus as a function of gas fraction, bubble size and elastic modulus of the emulsion. Such complex foams possess the elastic features of both the bubble assembly and the interstitial matrix. Moreover, their elastic modulus is shown to be governed by two parameters, namely the gas volume fraction and the elasto-capillary number, defined as the ratio of the emulsion modulus with the bubble capillary pressure. We connect our results for foams with existing data for bubbly systems and we provide a general view for the effect of gas bubbles in soft elastic media. Finally, we suggest that our results could be useful for estimating the shear modulus of aqueous foams and emulsions with multimodal size distributions.
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Submitted on : Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 5:12:34 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, December 8, 2020 - 10:21:04 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, July 28, 2017 - 1:48:48 PM

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François Gorlier, Yacine Khidas, Olivier Pitois. Coupled elasticity in soft solid foams. Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, Elsevier, 2017, 501, pp.103-111. ⟨10.1016/j.jcis.2017.04.033⟩. ⟨hal-01515587⟩

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