Forces Between Surfaces in Liquids

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Science  12 Aug 1988:
Vol. 241, Issue 4867, pp. 795-800
DOI: 10.1126/science.241.4867.795


Recent developments in the direct measurements of forces between surfaces in liquids at the ångstrom resolution level are reviewed. The results reveal a rich variety of interactions and interaction potentials that depend on the nature of the surfaces and intervening liquids. These results also shed new insights into liquid structure adjacent to surfaces and the interactions occurrig in complex systems, with implications in many different areas of chemical physics, biology, and technology. The origin of some important fundamental interactions, such as repulsive "hydration" forces and attractive "hydrophobic" forces, are still not understood and offer a challenge for experimental and theoretical work in this area.