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Role of natural convection in the dissolution of sessile droplets

  • Erik Dietrich (a1) (a2), Sander Wildeman (a1), Claas Willem Visser (a1), Kevin Hofhuis (a2), E. Stefan Kooij (a2), Harold J. W. Zandvliet (a2) and Detlef Lohse (a1) (a3)...

Abstract

The dissolution process of small (initial (equivalent) radius $R_{0}<1$  mm) long-chain alcohol (of various types) sessile droplets in water is studied, disentangling diffusive and convective contributions. The latter can arise for high solubilities of the alcohol, as the density of the alcohol–water mixture is then considerably less than that of pure water, giving rise to buoyancy-driven convection. The convective flow around the droplets is measured, using micro-particle image velocimetry ( ${\rm\mu}$ PIV) and the schlieren technique. When non-dimensionalizing the system, we find a universal $Sh\sim Ra^{1/4}$ scaling relation for all alcohols (of different solubilities) and all droplets in the convective regime. Here $Sh$ is the Sherwood number (dimensionless mass flux) and $Ra$ is the Rayleigh number (dimensionless density difference between clean and alcohol-saturated water). This scaling implies the scaling relation ${\it\tau}_{c}\propto R_{0}^{5/4}$ of the convective dissolution time ${\it\tau}_{c}$ , which is found to agree with experimental data. We show that in the convective regime the plume Reynolds number (the dimensionless velocity) of the detaching alcohol-saturated plume follows $Re_{p}\sim Sc^{-1}Ra^{5/8}$ , which is confirmed by the ${\rm\mu}$ PIV data. Here, $Sc$ is the Schmidt number. The convective regime exists when $Ra>Ra_{t}$ , where $Ra_{t}=12$ is the transition $Ra$ number as extracted from the data. For $Ra\leqslant Ra_{t}$ and smaller, convective transport is progressively overtaken by diffusion and the above scaling relations break down.

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Corresponding author

Email address for correspondence: d.lohse@utwente.nl

References

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JFM classification

Type Description Title
VIDEO
Movies

Dietrich et al. supplementary movie
Movie of a 1-hexanol droplet (initial equivalent radius 0.7 mm) dissolving in clean water. The droplet dissolves in the so called stick-jump mode.

 Video (3.1 MB)
3.1 MB
VIDEO
Movies

Dietrich et al. supplementary movie
Short outtake of a μPIV measurement, visualizing the convective flow around a dissolving 1-pentanol droplet.

 Video (9.9 MB)
9.9 MB

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