In this work, a detailed rheological study of hybrid poly(acrylamide-co
-acrylic acid) P(AAm-co-
AAc) aqueous microgel dispersions is performed. Our intention is to understand how the presence of gold nanoparticles, AuNP, embedded within the microgel matrix, affects the viscoelastic properties, the colloidal gel structure formation, and the structure recovery after cessation of the deformation of the aqueous microgel dispersions. Frequency sweep experiments confirmed that hybrid microgel dispersions present a gel-like behavior and that the presence of AuNP content within microgel matrix contributes to the elasticity of the microgel dispersions. Strain sweep test confirmed that hybrid microgels aqueous dispersion also form colloidal gel structures that break upon deformation but that can be recovered when the deformation decreases. The fractal analysis performed to hybrid microgels, by applying Shih et al. and Wu and Morbidelli’s scaling theories, evidenced that AuNP significantly affects the colloidal gel structure configuration ending up with the formation of agglomerates or microgel clusters with closer structures in comparison to the reference P(AAm-co-
AAc) aqueous microgel dispersions.
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