Burst Behavior at a Capillary Tip: Effect of Low and High Surface Tension

Agonafer, D.D., Lopez, K., Palko, J.W., Won, Y., Santiago, J.G., and Goodson, K.E., 2015, "Burst behavior at a capillary tip: Effect of low and high surface tension," Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, Vol. 455, pp. 1-5.  doi:10.1016/j.jcis.2015.05.033

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Liquid retention in micron and millimeter scale devices is important for maintaining stable interfaces in various processes including bimolecular separation, phase change heat transfer, and water desalination. There have been several studies of re-entrant geometries, and very few studies on retaining low surface tension liquids such as fluorocarbon-based dielectric liquids. Here, we study retention of a liquid with very low contact angles using borosilicate glass capillary tips. We analyzed capillary tips with outer diameters ranging from 250-840 µm and measured Laplace pressures up to 2.9 kPa. Experimental results agree well with a numerical model that predicts burst pressure (the maximum Laplace pressure for liquid retention), which is a function of the outer diameter (D) and capillary exit edge radius of curvature (r). 

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