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Direct Observation of Dynamical Heterogeneities in Colloidal Hard-Sphere Suspensions

Science
14 Jan 2000
Vol 287, Issue 5451
pp. 290-293

Abstract

The real-space dynamics in a model system of colloidal hard spheres was studied by means of time-resolved fluorescence confocal scanning microscopy. Direct experimental evidence for the presence of dynamical heterogeneities in a dense liquid was obtained from an analysis of particle trajectories in two-dimensional slices of the bulk sample. These heterogeneities manifest themselves as a non-Gaussian probability distribution of particle displacements and also affect the onset of long-time diffusive behavior.

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We thank G. Bosma, Z. Dogic, and C. Pathmamanoharan for their contribution in preparing the core-shell particles; J. Hoogenboom for computing g(r) in three dimensions; H. Lekkerkerker for many discussions during initialization of this work and for continuous interest; and G. Koenderink and D. Frenkel for comments on the manuscript. W.K.K. thanks P. Harrowell for enlightening discussions and correspondence. Supported by the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences (W.K.K.) and by FOM, which is part of the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research.

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Information & Authors

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Published In

Science
Volume 287 | Issue 5451
14 January 2000

Submission history

Received: 16 August 1999
Accepted: 15 November 1999
Published in print: 14 January 2000

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Authors

Affiliations

Willem K. Kegel
Van't Hoff Laboratory for Physical and Colloid Chemistry, Debye Institute, Utrecht University, Padualaan 8, 3584 CH Utrecht, Netherlands.
and Alfons van Blaaderen
Van't Hoff Laboratory for Physical and Colloid Chemistry, Debye Institute, Utrecht University, Padualaan 8, 3584 CH Utrecht, Netherlands.
Institute for Atomic and Molecular Physics, Stichting voor Fundamenteel Onderzoek der Materie (FOM), Kruislaan 407, 1098 SJ Amsterdam, Netherlands.

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