Probing nanoscale deformations of a fluctuating interface
Laboratoire Ondes et Matière d'Aquitaine, Université de Bordeaux & CNRS - 33405 Talence, France
Received: 11 February 2014
Accepted: 30 March 2014
We consider the contribution of thermal capillary waves to the interaction between a fluid-fluid interface and a nearby nanoparticle. Fluctuations are described thanks to an effective interaction potential which is derived using the renormalization group. The general theory is then applied to a spherical particle interacting with the interface through van der Waals forces. Surprisingly enough, we find that fluctuations contribute significantly to the deformation profile. Our study therefore reveals that thermal fluctuations cannot be ignored when probing nanoscale deformations of a soft interface.
PACS: 68.05.-n – Liquid-liquid interfaces / 68.03.Cd – Surface tension and related phenomena / 05.70.Np – Interface and surface thermodynamics
© EPLA, 2014