Phase Separation in Wetting Ridges of Sliding Drops on Soft and Swollen Surfaces

Lukas Hauer, Zhuoyun Cai, Artem Skabeev, Doris Vollmer, Jonathan T. Pham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Drops in contact with swollen, elastomeric substrates can induce a capillary mediated phase separation in wetting ridges. Using confocal microscopy, we visualize phase separation of oligomeric silicone oil from a cross-linked silicone network during steady-state sliding of water drops. We find an inverse relationship between the oil tip height and the drop sliding speed, which is rationalized by competing transport timescales of the oil molecules: separation rate versus drop-advection speed. Separation rates in highly swollen networks are as fast as diffusion in pure melts.

Original languageEnglish
Article number058205
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number5
StatePublished - Feb 3 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Rodrique G. M. Badr, Abhinav Naga, Friederike Schmid, and William S. Y. Wong for discussions. This research is supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation through Grant No. 2043732 (Z. C., J. T. P.), the German Research Foundation (DFG) with the Priority Programme 2171 (L. H., D. V.), and the Max Planck Center for Complex Fluid Dynamics—University of Twente (D. V.).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 authors. Published by the American Physical Society.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (all)


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