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    Gelled Polymerizable Microemulsions. Part 3 Rheology
    This is the first report on the rheological properties of oil-gelled polymerizable bicontinuous microemulsions. The polymerizable base system consists of H2O / NIPAm / BisAm – n-dodecane – C13/15E5 (a technical grade n-alkyl polyglycol ether), where NIPAm denotes the monomer N-isopropylacrylamide and BisAm the cross-linker N,N′-methylene bisacrylamide. For the planned polymerization of the aqueous phase a scaffold is needed to preserve the structure of the templating microemulsion during the polymerization. This scaffold is supposed to be a gel, which was formed by adding the gelator 12-hydroxyoctadecanoic acid (12-HOA) to the oil phase of the microemulsion. The influence of the water-to-oil ratio α, of the gelator concentration β, and of the monomer concentration ψ on the rheological behavior of gelled microemulsions has been studied in detail. The most important result of the study at hand is the observation of a transition from a high viscous solution to a gel, i.e. from a transient to a permanent network, with increasing gelator concentration and increasing amount of the oil phase, respectively. In other words, it is only under well-defined conditions that an oil-gelled microemulsion is formed.
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