The region in which non-specifically adsorbed ions are accumulated and distributed by the contrasting action of the electric field and thermal motion. Counter and co-ions
in immediate contact with the surface are said to be located in the Stern layer
. Ions farther away from the surface form the diffuse layer or Gouy layer.
PAC, 1972, 31, 577
(Manual of Symbols and Terminology for Physicochemical Quantities and Units, Appendix II: Definitions, Terminology and Symbols in Colloid and Surface Chemistry)
on page 618
IUPAC. Compendium of Chemical Terminology, 2nd ed. (the "Gold Book"). Compiled by A. D. McNaught and A. Wilkinson. Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford (1997). XML on-line corrected version: http://goldbook.iupac.org (2006-) created by M. Nic, J. Jirat, B. Kosata; updates compiled by A. Jenkins. ISBN 0-9678550-9-8. doi:10.1351/goldbook