Droplet Motion and Oscillation on Contrasting Micro-Striated Surfaces

Hongyu Zhao, Daniel Orejon Mantecon, Khellil Sefiane, Martin E. R. Shanahan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Spontaneous motion of liquid droplets can occur on hydrophobic, micro-structured, solid surfaces comprising a structural gradient. In this study,we examine such motion experimentally and explain our observations by invoking variable droplet-surface interactions (both actuation and resistance forces) due to the structural gradient. The oscillatory motion of the droplet constitutes an integral aspect of the behaviour and this is incorporated in the overall modelling. The theoretical model features a truncated spheroid for the drop shape (flattened in the region of solid contact) coupled with the oscillatory and alternate, leading and trailing motion of the contact line. Results from the model and experiments provide both good qualitative and quantitative agreement. The component of the vertical oscillation is found to help overcome wetting hysteresis and actuate the motion, this being a key element for the completeness of the model.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberA54
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
Early online date19 Apr 2021
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jun 2021


  • Drops and Bubbles
  • Nano-fluid dynamic
  • Microfluidics
  • Contact lines < Interfacial Flows


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