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Depinning of evaporating liquid films in square capillary tubes: Influence of corners’ roundedness

Abstract : In this paper, evaporation of a volatile, perfectly wettingliquid confined in an initially filled capillary tube of square internal cross section is studied, when conditions are such that liquid films develop along the tube internal corners under the effect of capillary forces, as the bulk meniscus recedes inside the tube. More precisely, the emphasis is on the moment when the liquid film tips depin from the tube top once they have reached a critical length, a phenomenon observed in experiments. A model taking into account liquid corner flow and phase change at the film tip is proposed in order to predict the critical film length at depinning. The model is found to be in good agreement with experimental data and highlights that the critical film length depends strongly on the degree of roundedness of the tube internal corners. Thus, it is crucial to take into account this purely geometrical factor when modeling evaporation in polygonal capillary tubes or, more generally, corner flows in a rounded wedge.
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Fabien Chauvet, Paul Duru, Marc Prat. Depinning of evaporating liquid films in square capillary tubes: Influence of corners’ roundedness. Physics of Fluids, American Institute of Physics, 2010, 22 (11), pp.112113. ⟨10.1063/1.3503925⟩. ⟨hal-01360012⟩

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