Stress propagation in a colloidal suspension under shear
William L. George, Pascal Hebraud, Didier Lootens, Mouhamad Khalil, Nicos Martys
The stress propagation in a concentrated attractive colloidal suspension, under shear, is studied using mumerical simulations. A novel way of describing the intercolloidal stress field is proposed and its spatial correlations are studied. An inertia-like tensor is defined in order to characterize the anisotropic nature of the stress field. It is shown that, although the particles remain in a liquid order, the interparticle stress is strongly anisotropic. A transition under flow is observed: at low deformations, the stress propagates along the compression direction of the shear, whereas at high deformations, the stress is organized into layers parallel to the flow direction.