A number of recent experiments suggest that, at a given wetting speed, the dynamic contact angle formed by an advancing liquid-gas interface with a solid substrate depends on the flow field and geometry near the moving contact line. In the present work, this effect is investigated in the framework of an earlier developed theory that was based on the fact that dynamic wetting is, by its very name, a process of formation of a new liquid-solid interface (newly "wetted" solid surface) and hence should be considered not as a singular problem but as a particular case from a general class of flows with forming or/and disappearing interfaces. The results demonstrate that, in the flow configuration of curtain coating, where a liquid sheet ("curtain") impinges onto a moving solid substrate, the actual dynamic contact angle indeed depends not only on the wetting speed and material constants of the contacting media, as in the so-called slip models, but also on the inlet velocity of the curtain, its height, and the angle between the falling curtain and the solid surface. In other words, for the same wetting speed the dynamic contact angle can be varied by manipulating the flow field and geometry near the moving contact line. The obtained results have important experimental implications: given that the dynamic contact angle is determined by the values of the surface tensions at the contact line and hence depends on the distributions of the surface parameters along the interfaces, which can be influenced by the flow field, one can use the overall flow conditions and the contact angle as a macroscopic multiparametric signal-response pair that probes the dynamics of the liquid-solid interface. This approach would allow one to investigate experimentally such properties of the interface as, for example, its equation of state and the rheological properties involved in the interface's response to an external torque, and would help to measure its parameters, such as the coefficient of sliding friction, the surface-tension relaxation time, and so on.
|Number of pages
|Physical Review E (Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics)
|Published - 1 May 2007