The Effect of Polydispersity in primary particle Size on Measurement of the fractal Dimension of Aggregates
The use of the mass fractal dimension has become a popular method of characterising the structure of aggregates of fine particles. This parameter is often inferred from scattering experiments that exhibit a power law correlation between scattered intensity and the scattering vector. In this paper we demonstrate deviations from this behaviour that occur when the particles making up the aggregate are not monodisperse, even though the aggregate maintains the same fractal structure as observed in the monodisperse case. We have performed light scattering experiments with aggregating colloidal haematite and performed DLCA computer simulations to explain the observed behaviour. The behaviour can influence the determination of the mass fractal dimension, as can other factors such as scattering effects from primary particles.