Rheology of colloidal particles in a confined channel under shear flow by brownian dynamic simulations

Miguel Angel Valdez*, Octavio Manero

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


A colloidal system of strongly charged particles, confined between two charged walls, is studied under static conditions and in the presence of shear flows. Brownian Dynamics simulations (BD) are used to determine the concentration profiles for several separations of charged walls. Results show good agreement with those obtained under static conditions using the Hypernetted Chain Approximation (HNC) and Monte Carlo simulations. Results obtained with BD and HNC for neutral walls show more similarities than those between BD and Monte Carlo simulations depending on the initial state of the colloidal particles. The presence of a shear flow held perturbs the equilibrium concentration profiles and the distribution function in the flow direction, generating a structureless system, as confirmed by the absence of peaks in the radial distribution function. The mobility of the particles in the transversal direction decreases rapidly and becomes practically frozen. The flow exhibits a non-Newtonian behavior with shear-thinning viscosity. Due to the interparticle interactions and particle-wall interactions, the viscosity is lower as the wall separation decreases, giving rise to an apparent slip in the colloidal suspension. The slip velocity for repulsive walls is higher than that obtained with neutral walls and increases with the shear stress according to a power law, as observed in polymer solutions. The shear viscosity and the normal stress differences depend strongly on the combined effect of confinement, concentration of particles, magnitudes of inter-particle interactions and wall-particle repulsion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-91
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Colloid and Interface Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jun 1997

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
M. A. Valdez acknowledges the support from CONACYT (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y TecnologıBa), the computer facilities at UNISON (Physics Department and DIFUS), at the University of Guadalajara and UNAM. Fruitful discussions and collaboration with Professor M. Medina-Noyola are also appreciated.


  • Brownian dynamic simulations
  • Charged colloidal particles
  • Shear flow
  • Slip


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