Degree course: 
Corso di Second cycle degree in PHYSICS
Academic year when starting the degree: 
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
Course type: 
Supplementary compulsory subjects
Second semester
Standard lectures hours: 
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (60 hours)

Having attended the lecture courses:
Physical Chemistry I, for information on Chemical Thermodynamics, Quantum Mechanics and spectroscopy;
Physical Chemistry II, for information on Statistical Thermodynamics and Chemical Kinetics.

Final Examination: 

Viva voce exam: solving quantitative problems and verification of the ability in employing the taught material in practical cases.

Voto Finale

• Knowledge of the key thermodynamic processes, of the key measurable quantities and of their physical and chemical meaning, both at the macroscopic and microscopic levels of detail;
• Ability in selecting the appropriate concepts, formulae and equations to be employed while tackling quantitative questions and analyzing experimental data or the quantitative features of interfacial systems; ability in extrapolating or simplifying complicate interfacial systems to allow their rational analysis;
• Understanding the differences in behavior between interfacial and bulk systems;
• Appreciation for the scientific and technological applications of dispersed systems.

Introduction to dispersed and discontinuous systems: scientific and technological importance; practical applications; experimental measures and theoretical predictions (2h)
Fluid interfaces and capillarity: surface tension and its dependence on temperature and composition; molecular monolayers; intermolecular forces and origin of interphase tension; molecular characteristics and their impact on interface tension (4h).
Static and dynamical effects of surface tension: Young-Laplace equation and its solutions; experimental determination of surface tension; surface curvature and impact on vapor pressure (Kelvin's effect); bubbles and droplets nucleation, statistical and classical description; supersaturation; thin liquid films and their properties (8h)
Energetic of bulk systems and their interfaces; surface wetting and droplet curvature, multicomponent systems and interfacial adsorption; application of the "phase rule" and Gibbs' adsorption equation; physical and chemical characteristics of surfactants; surfactant self-assembly; protecting solid materials (10h).
Dispersed systems: micelles and self-assembling systems, crystal mesophases; micell dynamics and time-evolution; micelles as drug vectors; polymeric micelles; lysosomes and vesicles (6h).
Colloids: definition of colloidal systems and their classification; stability and preparation of colloidal systems; colloidal morphology (shape, size and related distributions); sedimentation, centrifugation and diffusion of colloids; experimental determination of size and its distribution (microscopy and Dynamic Light Scattering); interaction between colloidal particles and its consequences (DVLO theory, Hofmeister series, kinetics and dynamics of aggregation); polymer adsorption (strong and weak polyelectrolytes) on colloidal particles (10h).
Possible laboratory experiences: bubble and liquid bridges; surface tension and micella critical concentration measurement; molecular monolayers; preparation of colloidal systems (S, Ag, silica) and theri sedimentation; formation and destruction of colloidal gels; computer simulations of colloidal systems (12h).

J. C. Berg, An Introduction to Interfaces and Colloids: The Bridge to Nanoscience, World Scientific.
Ken A. Dill, Sarina Bromberg, Molecular Driving Forces II Ed., Garland Science
Peter Atkins, Julio de Paula, Atkins’ Physical Chemistry IX Ed., Oxford University Press
Course handouts, websites providing relevant material.

Frontal lectures (40h): theoretical presentation of the main topics;
Possible laboratory experiences (12h): synthesis and characterization of colloidal systems.

Further explanations: any day, by appointment only.

Borrowed from

click on the activity card to see more information, such as the teacher and descriptive texts.