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We use reverse micelles (RMs) as our model system to study the impact of osmolytes on water at the nanoscale. Reverse micelles are characterized by w0 = [polar component]/[surfactant]. In our experiment, we focus on 5 different w0 (w0 = 1, 5, 10, 20, 40) and 3 concentrations of urea (0.5M, 1M, 2M). The Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) illustrates a linear relationship between reverse w0 (the ratio) and size. Additionally, the DLS data indicates that the impact of osmolytes on size for small reverse micelles is not significant. Furthermore, Red-Edge Emission Spectroscopy shows a bigger impact on emission for smaller reverse micelles compared to the larger w0 samples.


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1956198 and 1956323. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

Thank you to Professor Bridget Gourley, PhD for her mentorship and support.

Thank you to Professor Nancy Levinger, PhD, Colorado State University for her meaningful conversations and support.

Thank you to Yayo Virgen, graduate student at Colorado State University, for his mentorship and guidance.

Thank you to Department of Chemistry and BioChemistry, DePauw University and Department of Chemistry, Colorado State University for the use of facilities and materials.

Thank you to the “DePauw University J. William Asher and Melanie J. Norton Endowed Fund in the Sciences”.

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