Structural Evolution of Wormlike Micellar Fluids Formed by Erucyl Amidopropyl Betaine with Oil, Salts, and Surfactants

Thomas M. McCoy, Alsu Valiakhmetova, Matthew J. Pottage, Christopher J. Garvey, Liliana De Campo, Christine Rehm, Dmitry A. Kuryashov, Rico F. Tabor*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Solutions of extended, flexible cylindrical micelles, often known as wormlike micelles, have great potential as the base for viscoelastic complex fluids in oil recovery, drilling, and lubrication. Here, we study the morphology and nanostructural characteristics of a model wormlike micellar fluid formed from erucyl amidopropyl betaine (EAPB) in water as a function of a diverse range of additives relevant to complex fluid formulation. The wormlike micellar dispersions are extremely oleo-responsive, with even as little as 0.1% hydrocarbon oil causing a significant disruption of the network and a decrease in zero-shear viscosity of around 100-fold. Simple salts have little effect on the local structure of the wormlike micelles but result in the formation of fractal networks at larger length scales, whereas even tiny amounts of small organic species such as phenol can cause unexpected phase transitions. When forming mixtures with other surfactants, a vast array of self-assembled structures are formed, from spheres to ellipsoids, lamellae, and vesicles, offering the ultimate sensitivity in designing formulations with specific nanostructural characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12423-12433
Number of pages11
Issue number47
Early online date3 Sept 2016
Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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