Colloids are systems comprised of particles of mesoscopic size suspended in a liquid. They have recently been attracting increased attention from scientists and engineers due to the fact that they are nowadays present in many industrial products such as paints, oil additives, electronic ink displays and drugs. Colloids also serve as versatile model systems for phenomena and structures from solid-state physics, surface science and statistical mechanics, and can easily be studied using tabletop experiments to provide insight into processes not readily accessible in atomic systems.
This book presents the lectures delivered at the 2012 Enrico Fermi School ‘Physics of Complex Colloids’, held in Varenna, Italy, in July 2012. The school addressed experimental, theoretical and numerical results and methods, and the lectures covered a broad spectrum of topics from the starting point of the synthesis of colloids and their use in commercial products.
The lectures review the state-of-the-art of colloidal science in a pedagogical way, discussing both the basics and the latest results, and this book will serve as a reference for both students and experts in this rapidly growing field.