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Universal Deformation of Soft Substrates Near a Contact Line and the Direct Measurement of Solid Surface Stresses
Stockholm University, Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics (Nordita). Yale Univ, New Haven, CT 06520 USA.
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2013 (English)In: Physical Review Letters, ISSN 0031-9007, Vol. 110, no 6, 066103- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Droplets deform soft substrates near their contact lines. Using confocal microscopy, we measure the deformation of silicone gel substrates due to glycerol and fluorinated-oil droplets for a range of droplet radii and substrate thicknesses. For all droplets, the substrate deformation takes a universal shape close to the contact line that depends on liquid composition, but is independent of droplet size and substrate thickness. This shape is determined by a balance of interfacial tensions at the contact line and provides a novel method for direct determination of the surface stresses of soft substrates. Moreover, we measure the change in contact angle with droplet radius and show that Young's law fails for small droplets when their radii approach an elastocapillary length scale. For larger droplets the macroscopic contact angle is constant, consistent with Young's law. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.066103

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 110, no 6, 066103- p.
National Category
Physical Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-88686DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.066103ISI: 000314770600016OAI: diva2:612997


Funding Agencies:

Yale University; Bateman Interdepartmental Postdoctoral Fellowship;   Swedish Research Council;   NSF  DBI-0619674 

Available from: 2013-03-26 Created: 2013-03-25 Last updated: 2013-09-12Bibliographically approved

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Wettlaufer, J. S.
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