Detachment of droplets in a fully developed turbulent channel flow

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23 Citations (Scopus)


Liquid aerosols deform and detach from solid surfaces under an external force. It is a familiar phenomenon in many engineering applications. This article experimentally investigates the deformation and detachment of liquid droplets on three different solid surfaces in a fully developed turbulent channel flow. It is shown that the droplets either are compressed or elongate under the turbulent flow. The elongation of the droplet due to the turbulent flow is measured and presented. When the friction velocity of the flow exceeds a critical value, the droplets slide along the surface. The critical friction velocity is found empirically to be inversely proportional to the square root of the contact diameter. The sliding velocity after detachment is also reported. It has been observed by many researchers that, when the external force is gravity or a simple shear flow, the retention force of the droplet is proportional to the difference between the cosines of the receding and advancing contact angles. As the shape of a deformed droplet is much more complex under a turbulent flow, this article discusses the applicability of the same relation to the turbulent channel flow.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)916-923
Number of pages8
JournalAerosol Science and Technology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Pollution


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