The surface element integration technique was used to systematically study Derjaguin-Landau-Verwey-Overbeek (DLVO) interaction energies/forces between hollow spherical particles (HPs) and a planar surface or two intercepting half planes under different ionic strength conditions. The inner and outer spheres of HPs were concentric (CHP) or in point contact (PHP). In comparison to a solid particle, the attractive van der Waals interaction was reduced with increasing inner radius of the CHP, but the reduction effect was less significant for the CHP at smaller separation distance. Increasing the inner radius for CHP therefore reduced the depths of the secondary minima, but had minor influence on the energy barrier heights and depths of the primary minima. Consequently, increasing inner radius reduced the potential for CHP retention in secondary minima, whereas did not influence the retention in primary minima. For PHP these interaction energy parameters and colloid retention depended on the orientation of the inner sphere relative to interacting surface. In particular, the van der Waals attraction was significantly reduced at all separation distances when the inner sphere was closest to the interacting surface, and this diminished retention in both secondary and primary minima. The PHP retention was similar to that of CHP when the inner sphere was farthest from the interaction surface. These orientation dependent interaction energies/forces resulted in directional bonds between PHPs and the formation of aggregates with contact points of the primary PHPs facing outward. The findings in this study have important implications for the design and utilization of HPs in soil remediation and colloid assembly.
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