Stick-Slip Sliding of Water Drops on Chemically Heterogeneous Surfaces

 S. Varagnolo, D. Ferraro, P. Fantinel, M. Pierno, G. Mistura, G. Amati, L. Biferale, and M. Sbragaglia

Physics Review Letters, 2013, doi:https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.111.066101      PDF

We present a comprehensive study of water drops sliding down chemically heterogeneous surfaces formed by a periodic pattern of alternating hydrophobic and hydrophilic stripes. Drops are found to undergo a stick-slip motion whose average speed is an order of magnitude smaller than that measured on a homogeneous surface having the same static contact angle. This motion is the result of the periodic deformations of the drop interface when crossing the stripes. Numerical simulations confirm this view and are used to elucidate the principles underlying the experimental observations.

 

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