Energy dissipation in concentrated monodisperse colloidal suspensions of silica particles in polyethylene glycol
Highly concentrated colloidal suspensions exhibit a discontinuous shear-thickening behaviour. The transition from a low to a high viscosity state is associated to a large energy dissipation. This effect could find applications in structural damping while the viscosity increase brings added stiffness. In the present work, highly concentrated suspensions of monodisperse spherical silica particles in polyethylene glycol were selected for their strong thickening at low critical shear rates. Their damping properties were characterized by measuring the energy dissipated per cycle at low frequency (below 2 Hz) during oscillatory tests using a rheometer. The influence of parameters such as particle concentration, size and frequency was investigated. Damping was found to overcome that of benchmark elastomeric materials only in high frequencies and high strain domains.