A gel is a disperse system that consists of at least two components. The solid component forms a spongy , three-dimensional network, the pores of which are filled with a liquid ( lyogel ) or a gas ( xerogel ). The liquid component is thereby immobilized in the solid one. If the network is highly porous and air is the stored gas, the gel is also referred to as an airgel . Both components penetrate each other completely ( bicoherent ). This definition is the most widely used; there is no generally accepted definition.
Gel , as an acronym for gelatine, was given its current meaning by Thomas Graham . Jelly , thus a thickened meat or fruit juice, comes from the French gelée , probably as the gelatin on Latin gelu back, ice '.
Building the network
A general distinction is made between secondary valence gels and main valence gels. The network of secondary valence gels is based on dipole-dipole forces , hydrogen bonds or Coulomb forces , while that of the main valence gels is based on covalent atomic bonds . Minor valence gels are heat reversible (e.g. gels based on pectin or gelatine).
The formation of a gel is generally referred to as gelation , and this term encompasses quite different areas. The point in the synthesis process from which one speaks of a gel is referred to as the gel point .
In the case of foods, gelling is usually brought about by the use of gelling agents .
Gels can be used as the basis for pharmaceutical preparations, fillers for gel saddles and gel beds , hair gel for shaping a hairstyle, as well as liquid ballpoint pen ink or as decor gel for baking. Natural fats are also often gels. Gels are also used as a matrix in the separation process of gel electrophoresis . Pudding, toothpaste, and “solid” wall paint are gels.
- IUPAC - gel (G02600). Retrieved January 29, 2020 .
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