In pursue of clarity



Guido Bognolo
WSA Associates, Brussels

While giving a free ride to my thoughts in a moment of relax, an amazing analogy struck me: the puzzling conceptual similarities between the world of surfactants and the realm of quantum physics, where probability rather than certitude is the name of the game. 

I would not be surprised if someone reading this opening sentence will think that it is perhaps the leftover of excessive moonlighting or worse.

But just think for a moment: physicists tell us that for any given particle there is an anti-particle, such that negatively charged electrons have positively charged anti-electrons, positively charged protons have negatively charged anti-protons and so on for a plethora of couples of particles/anti-particles with properties/anti-properties. Now, in surfactants, you have molecules that produce opposite effects: foaming/de-foaming, wetting/de-wetting, emulsifying/de-emulsifying, dispersing/flocculating etc. When a particle meets an anti-particle they annihilate. When a surfactant meets an anti-surfactant all effects are lost.

Want something more? Heisenberg’s indetermination principle is a pillar of quantum physics. Now, have you ever met something clear, ...