Numerous natural and manufactured systems such as colloidal suspensions, geological pore networks, catalysts, and nanofluidic devices develop a large and sometimes complex interface strongly influencing the dynamics of the fluid entrapped inside these materials. A coarse grain picture of this molecular dynamics can be considered as an intermittence of adsorption steps and bulk relocations from one point to another point of the interface. Adsorption statistics such as the adsorption time distribution and its first moment reflect the degree of interaction of the molecule with the colloidal interface. Relocation statistics strongly depend on the shape of the pore, the surface forces and the bulk confinement. In this paper, a theoretical analysis of this intermittent dynamics is presented. A direct comparison with molecular dynamics simulations is proposed in the case of liquid water confined inside a hydrophilic substrate (silica slit pore with hydroxylated surfaces) or inside a hydrophobic substrate (carbon nanotube). Analysis of this intermittent dynamics allows quantification of the level of interaction of the vicinal water with the solid interface inside an independent adsorption region in exchange with the confined bulk fluid. The possibility of experimentally probing this dynamics using NMR relaxometry is emphasized.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Condensed Matter Physics