Transition from Newtonian to non-Newtonian surface shear viscosity of phospholipid monolayers

A. H. Sadoughi, Juan Lopez, A. H. Hirsa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The surface shear viscosity of DPPC (dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine) monolayers on the air/water interface was determined over a wide range of surface concentrations in an annular channel. DPPC is studied widely because it is ubiquitous in biological systems. Brewster angle microscopy (BAM) was found to be capable of measuring the monolayer velocity field, even in the absence of co-existing phase domains. Interfacial velocimetry via cross correlations of BAM images provides accurate and non-invasive measurements, useful for both macro and microrheology. The measured velocity profiles are compared with computed profiles obtained over a range of surface shear conditions using the Boussinesq-Scriven surface model, from which the surface shear viscosity was determined. For monolayers in the liquid expanded (LE) and liquid expanded/liquid condensed (LE/LC) co-existing phases, we observe Newtonian behavior. We also show how the flow departs from the Newtonian regime for monolayers with larger surface concentration, corresponding to LC phase transition to solid phase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number032107
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 19 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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