Surface and colloid chemistry

lbir1346  2019-2020  Louvain-la-Neuve

Surface and colloid chemistry
Note from June 29, 2020
Although we do not yet know how long the social distancing related to the Covid-19 pandemic will last, and regardless of the changes that had to be made in the evaluation of the June 2020 session in relation to what is provided for in this learning unit description, new learnig unit evaluation methods may still be adopted by the teachers; details of these methods have been - or will be - communicated to the students by the teachers, as soon as possible.
3 credits
30.0 h
General physics, General chemistry, Introduction to thermodynamics

The prerequisite(s) for this Teaching Unit (Unité d’enseignement – UE) for the programmes/courses that offer this Teaching Unit are specified at the end of this sheet.
Main themes
Overview of colloidal systems and interfaces
Kinetic theory of colloidal systems: concepts, applications
Surface energy: concepts, applications
Adsorption: concepts, applications
Charged interfaces: physico-chemical models
Interactions between surfaces: concepts, applications

At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :


At the end of the course, the student will be able to:

-       Rephrase the concepts which allow understanding physico-chemical phenomena involving dispersed systems and interfaces (surfaces, colloids, nanometer-scale and supramolecular systems), and their impact on the behavior of such systems at the macroscale;

-       Evaluate the consequences of these phenomena, based on realistic numerical values;

-       Establish links between phenomena occurring at different scales (nano, micro, macro);

-       Explain phenomena observed in daily life or in typical bioengineering applications (materials, food, living systems, soils and environment, chemical industries, biotechnology) on the basis of concepts developed in the course;

-       Predict the behavior of simple systems.


The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled “Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit”.
Introduction: overview of colloidal systems and interfaces.
Kinetic theory of colloidal systems: sedimentation, centrifugation, diffusion, Brownian movement.
Surface energy: surface tension, Laplace equation, wetting - capillarity - adhesion - cohesion - dispersion, porosimetry, illustrations.
Adsorption from solution: properties of monolayers, adsorption, Gibbs equation, Langmuir isotherm, illustrations.
Properties of charged surfaces: origin of charge, physical and chemical models of the double layer, interactions between particles and stability of colloidal systems.
Teaching methods
Lectures illustrated by experimental observations and mixed with the resolution of numerical exercises.
Evaluation methods
During the semester: tests on limited parts of the course (25% of final grade). At the end of the semester: written exam, including an open book question (75% of final grade).
Online resources
website on the Moodle platform
voir site Moodle du cours
Faculty or entity

Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Bachelor in Bioengineering

Master [120] in Environmental Bioengineering

Advanced Master in Brewing Engineering

Additionnal module in Chemistry