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J Colloid Interface Sci. 2003 Dec 1;268(1):106-20.

A simple model for the structure of fractal aggregates.

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Institut für Chemie- und Bioingenieurwissenschaften, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, ETH-Hönggerberg/HCI, CH-8093, Zürich, Switzerland.


Structural properties of small aggregates containing up to 100 particles have been studied through detailed Monte Carlo cluster-cluster aggregation simulations in both diffusion-limited and reaction-limited conditions. First, the radius of gyration, the radius of the smallest sphere encompassing the cluster, and the particle-particle correlation function, g(r), have been computed based on the positions of all the particles in the cluster, and their fractal scaling has been analyzed. Then, an empirical model has been developed to simulate the g(r) function for aggregates of any size and used to determine the corresponding structural properties and scattering structure factors. Finally, in order to illustrate the application of the structural properties thus computed, two experiments on diffusion-limited aggregation have been performed, and the average scattering structure factors have been measured as a function of time using a small-angle light-scattering device. The obtained average scattering structure factors have been simulated using the Smoluchowski population balance equations, using the single aggregate structural properties and scattering structure factor predicted by the developed empirical g(r) model.


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