Wetting of yield-stress fluids : capillary bridges and drop spreading

Abstract : Wetting phenomena and yield-stress fluids rheology are subfields of soft matter physics where big understanding steps have been made during the last centuries. In addition, these two fields have very important potential implications for industry, which contributes to their dynamism. But their combination, the wetting of yield-stress fluids, has received little interest until the very last years, although it is a situation that happens all the time. Indeed, yield-stress fluids gather nearly all the fluids encountered in food industry, cosmetics, building industry, oil and gas industry… and wetting properties are crucial when processing or using the fluids, as many processes involve interfaces with air or a solid surface.In this thesis, I consider the following questions: how is the apparent surface tension affected by yield stress? How does the yield stress influence the wetting dynamics, classically described by Tanner’s law? Why can the final contact angle of a sessile drop of yield-stress fluid not be predicted by Young-Dupré’s theory?I performed experiments with a model yield-stress fluid called carbopol. The first experiment consisted in measuring the adhesion force of a capillary bridge and comparing it to the case of simple fluids. The main results show the importance of the deformation history and of the fluid elasticity. The second main experiment concerned spreading of drops on a hydrophilic surface. I studied the short-time dynamics and the long-time dynamics, as well as the final contact angle. The first regime is controlled by viscoelasticity, whereas the final state is determined by the yield stress
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Loren Jørgensen. Wetting of yield-stress fluids : capillary bridges and drop spreading. Materials Science [cond-mat.mtrl-sci]. Université de Lyon, 2016. English. ⟨NNT : 2016LYSE1163⟩. ⟨tel-01424224⟩

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