Instabilities in droplets spreading on gels.


Journal Article

We report a novel surface-tension driven instability observed for droplets spreading on a compliant substrate. When a droplet is released on the surface of an agar gel, it forms arms or cracks when the ratio of surface-tension gradient to gel strength is sufficiently large. We explore a range of gel strengths and droplet surface tensions and find that the onset of the instability and the number of arms depend on the ratio of surface tension to gel strength. However, the arm length grows with an apparently universal law L proportional t(3/4).

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Daniels, KE; Mukhopadhyay, S; Houseworth, PJ; Behringer, RP

Published Date

  • September 18, 2007

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 99 / 12

Start / End Page

  • 124501 -

PubMed ID

  • 17930507

Pubmed Central ID

  • 17930507

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1079-7114

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0031-9007

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1103/physrevlett.99.124501


  • eng