Computer simulations of (i) a [C12mim] [Tf2N] film of nanometric thickness squeezed at kbar pressure by a piecewise parabolic confining potential reveal a mesoscopic in-plane density and composition modulation reminiscent of mesophases seen in 3D samples of the same room-temperature ionic liquid (RTIL). Near 2D confinement, enforced by a high normal load, as well as relatively long aliphatic chains are strictly required for the mesophase formation, as confirmed by computations for two related systems made of (ii) the same [C12mim] [Tf2N] adsorbed at a neutral solid surface and (iii) a shorter-chain RTIL ([C4mim] [Tf2N]) trapped in the potential well of part i. No in-plane modulation is seen for ii and iii. In case ii, the optimal arrangement of charge and neutral tails is achieved by layering parallel to the surface, while, in case iii, weaker dispersion and packing interactions are unable to bring aliphatic tails together into mesoscopic islands, against overwhelming entropy and Coulomb forces. The onset of in-plane mesophases could greatly affect the properties of long-chain RTILs used as lubricants.
|Titolo:||Mesophases in nearly-2D room-temperature ionic liquids|
MANINI, NICOLA (Primo)
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore FIS/03 - Fisica della Materia|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2009|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1021/jp907924z|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01 - Articolo su periodico|