Influence of carbon quantum dots on the viscosity reduction of polyacrylamide solution

Maje Alhaji Haruna, Zhongliang Hu, Hui Gao, Jabbar Gardy, Saminu Musa Magami, Dongsheng Wen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Viscosity is one of the key factors which influence the application of polyacrylamide (PAM) in enhanced oil recovery (EOR). In this study, we have demonstrated the viscosity reduction of PAM solution by using carbon quantum dots (CQDs) through rheological, spectroscopic and thermal analyses. The stability of PAM, CQDs, and PAM/CQDs composites, and the chemical interactions between PAM and CQDs were investigated. The addition of CQDs into PAM solution decreased its viscosity, demonstrating a phenomenon which contradicts the expression normally derived from the Einstein–Batchelor law for the viscosity of particle suspensions. Consequently, the elastic properties of PAM/CQDs composites were lower than those of the pure PAM solutions. Moreover, the presence of CQDs in the PAM increased its flow activation energy and decreased its yield point, leading to an increased sensitivity to both temperature and shear rate. The mechanism behind the reduced viscosity behaviour of PAM/CQDs composites appears to be the formation of free radicals and the elimination of ammonia molecules, leading to the deterioration of the polymer backbone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-214
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 15 Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Carbon quantum dots
  • Polyacrylamide
  • Reduced viscosity
  • Rheology
  • Viscoelasticity


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