WYSS, H.M. ... et al, 2010. Capillary micromechanics: measuring the elasticity of microscopic soft objects. Soft Matter, 6 (18), pp. 4550 - 4555.
We present a simple method for accessing the elastic properties of microscopic deformable particles. This method is based on measuring the pressure-induced deformation of soft particles as they are forced through a tapered glass microcapillary. It allows us to determine both the compressive and the shear modulus of a deformable object in one single experiment. Measurements on a model system of poly-acrylamide microgel particles exhibit good agreement with measurements on bulk gels of identical composition. Our approach is applicable over a wide range of mechanical properties and should thus be a valuable tool for the characterization of a variety of soft and biological materials.
This article is closed access.
This work was supported in part by the NSF (DMR-0602684),
the Harvard MRSEC (DMR-0820484), and by grants from Italy
(FIRB project RBIN045NMB and the Apulia Regional Strategic
Project PS144) and from Germany (Bayerische Forschungsstiftung
and the German Excellence Initiative (NIM)).