Ostwald ripening, the interfacial-energy-driven dissolution and reprecipitation of solutes, becomes an increasingly significant problem for nanoparticle formulations. We present the first quantitative study of Ostwald ripening for nanoparticle dispersions. The Lifshitz-Slyozov-Wagner (LSW) theory of particle growth driven by diffusion is applied to study β-carotene nanoparticles with sizes of O(100nm) formed by our block-copolymer protected Flash Nanoprecipitation process. A numerical implementation of the LSW theory that accounts for the original particle size distribution is presented. The predicted particle sizes from the numerical simulation are compared with the experimental results measured by dynamical light scattering. The results show quantitative agreement with no adjustable parameters. The addition of antisolvent results in the reduction of the ripening rate by dramatically decreasing bulk solubility.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)