Prof. Gustav Amberg from KTH and President of Södertorn University
When and how surface structure determines the dynamics of partial wetting
Dynamic wetting, as observed when a droplet contacts a dry solid surface, is ubiquitous in nature, and important in technology. Our overall aim is to investigate if and how the detailed properties of the solid surface influence the dynamics of wetting. Here we discuss how surface roughness influences the initial dynamic spreading of a partially wetting droplet by studying the spreading on a solid substrate patterned with microstructures just a few micrometers in size. This is complemented by matching numerical simulations. We present a parameter map, based on the properties of the liquid and the solid surface, which identifies qualitatively different spreading regimes, where the spreading speed is limited by either the liquid viscosity, the surface properties, or the liquid inertia. The peculiarities of the different spreading regimes are studied by detailed numerical simulations, in conjuction with experiments.