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Keywords:

  • carboxylic acids;
  • colloids;
  • electrophoresis;
  • hydrophobic effect;
  • interfaces
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Impure at heart: A pH-dependent negative charge of the interface between a hydrophobic phase and water results from the reaction of hydroxide ions with traces of fatty acids, contained in the hydrophobic phase (see scheme). This reaction explains the uptake of hydroxide ions by the interface with a large free energy change.