Since the main chain of the silicone surfactant is a soft Si-O bond, neither hydrophilic nor oleophilic, it can be used as a non-aqueous medium in which aqueous solutions and ordinary hydrocarbon surfactants cannot be used. On the other hand, the silicone surfactant is arranged at the interface with a methyl group to reduce the surface tension to about 20 mN/m, while the ordinary hydrocarbon surfactant is arranged at the interface with a methylene group, which only causes the surface tension to drop. Up to 30mN/m.
The most widely used silicone surfactants are EO/PO modified silicone surfactants, and their properties are related to various factors such as the ratio of EO/PO and the degree of polymerization of the surfactant. EO is the hydrophilic portion of the surfactant modifying group and PO is the lipophilic portion. When the ratio of EO/PO changes, the properties of the silicone surfactant change. It has been found that if the EO/PO ratio becomes larger, the HLB value of the surfactant increases, indicating that the hydrophilicity is enhanced; and the EO/PO ratio becomes smaller, which lowers the hydrophilicity of the surfactant. When the length of EO of the graft type polyether-modified silicone oil is the same, the surface tension thereof increases as the degree of polymerization of the polysiloxane decreases. This is due to the shorter the molecular chain of the polysiloxane, the tighter the packing at the air/water interface, and the more methyl groups on the surface. When PO is introduced, the hydrophobicity of the polyether chain is increased, thereby increasing the surface tension of the polyether-modified silicone oil.
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