Energies, Vol. 15, Pages 110: A Method for the Segregation of Emulsion Inner Phase Droplets Using Imbibition Process in Porous Material

Energies doi: 10.3390/en15010110

Mariola M. Błaszczyk
Łukasz Przybysz

The process of forming an emulsion is an energy-consuming process. The smaller the internal phase droplets we want to produce and the closer the droplets are in size to each other (monodisperse), the more energy we need to put into the system. Generating energy carries a high economic cost, as well as a high environmental footprint. Considering the fact that dispersive systems are widely used in various fields of life, it is necessary to search for other, less-energy-intensive methods that will allow the creation of dispersive systems with adequate performance and minimal energy input. Therefore, an alternative way to obtain emulsions characterized by small droplet sizes was proposed by using an imbibition process in porous materials. By applying this technique, it was possible to obtain average droplet sizes at least half the size of the base emulsion while reducing the polydispersity by about 40%. Oil-in-water emulsions in which vegetable oil or kerosene is the oily phase were tested. The studies were carried out at three different volume concentrations of the emulsions. Detailed analyses of diameter distributions and emulsion concentrations are presented. In addition, the advantages and limitations of the method are presented and the potential for its application is indicated.

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