Predicting electrostatic charge on single microparticles

Chaitanya Krishna Prasad Vallabh, James D. Stephens, Grazyna Kmiecik-Lawrynowicz, Santokh Badesha, Maura Sweeney, Cetin Cetinkaya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Electrostatic charge significantly affects the adhesion of microparticles. Presently the nature of surface charge distribution on a single microparticle and the effect of electrostatic charge as a contributor to its adhesion are not well understood. As a result of the strong discrepancies between the experimental adhesion measurements data and theoretical predictions over the years, some questions regarding adhesion force contributors in charged microparticles still remain unresolved. One reason for the current state of knowledge is difficulties associated with accurate measurement of particle charge. In current work, a non-contact and non-destructive opto-ultrasonic method is presented and employed to predict the equivalent bulk charge on a single charged micro-scale toner particle and to provide insight into the nature of charge distribution on its surface. From the vibrational spectral response of the particle to the ultrasonic excitation of the substrate, irregular shifting patterns of the vibrational (in-plane rocking) resonance frequencies of the particle are observed for the applied levels of substrate surface voltage (0-1500. V), implying non-uniform (patch-charges) surface charge distribution on the microparticle. For predicting the equivalent bulk charge on a single patch-charged toner particle from this resonance frequency shift, a mathematical model is developed and employed. In conclusion, it is demonstrated that, in a non-invasive/non-contact manner, the total charge on a single microparticle can be predicted using the presented experimental approach, and evidence for the non-uniform charge distribution on a single particle is observed and reported.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)684-696
Number of pages13
JournalPowder Technology
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemical Engineering


  • Charge distribution
  • Microparticle adhesion
  • Ultrasonic methods
  • Work-of-adhesion

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