Discerning the Contribution of Morphology and Chemistry in Wettability Studies

Karen Sloyan, Chia Yun Lai, Jin You Lu, Boulos Alfakes, Saeed Al Hassan, Ibraheem Almansouri, Marcus S. Dahlem, Matteo Chiesa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The wetting behavior of homogeneous systems is now well understood at the macroscopic scale. However, this understanding offers little predictive power regarding wettability when mesoscopic chemical and morphological heterogeneities come into play. The fundamental interest in the effect of heterogeneity on wettability is derived from its high technological relevance in several industries, including the petroleum industry where wettability is recognized as a key determinant of the overall efficiency of the water-flooding-based enhanced oil recovery process. Here, we demonstrate the use of the atomic force microscopy force curve measurements to distinguish the roles of chemistry and morphology in the wetting properties of rock formations, thus providing a clear interpretation and deeper insight into the wetting behavior of heterogeneous formations. Density functional theory calculations further prove the versatility of our approach by establishing benchmarks on ideal surfaces that differ in chemistry and morphology in a predefined manner.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)7768-7773
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry A
Issue number38
StatePublished - 27 Sep 2018


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