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Numerical study of wetting transitions on biomimetic surfaces using a lattice Boltzmann approach with large density ratio

Gong, Wei; Yan, Yuying; Chen, Sheng; Giddings, Donald


Wei Gong

Professor of Thermofluids Engineering

Sheng Chen


The hydrophobicity of natural surfaces have drawn much attention of scientific communities in recent years. By mimicking natural surfaces, the manufactured biomimetic hydrophobic surfaces have been widely applied to green technologies such as self-cleaning surfaces. Although the theories for wetting and hydrophobicity have been developed, the mechanism of wetting transitions between heterogeneous wetting state and homogeneous wetting state is still not fully clarified. As understanding of wetting transitions is crucial for manufacturing a biomimetic superhydrophobic surface, more fundamental discussions in this area should be carried out. In the present work the wetting transitions are numerically studied using a phase field lattice Boltzmann approach with large density ratio, which should be helpful in understanding the mechanism of wetting transitions. The dynamic wetting transition processes between Cassie-Baxter state and Wenzel state are presented, and the energy barrier and the gravity effect on transition are discussed. It is found that the two wetting transition processes are irreversible for specific inherent contact angles and have different transition routes, the energy barrier exists on an ideally patterned surface and the gravity can be crucial to overcome the energy barrier and trigger the transition.


Gong, W., Yan, Y., Chen, S., & Giddings, D. (2017). Numerical study of wetting transitions on biomimetic surfaces using a lattice Boltzmann approach with large density ratio. Journal of Bionic Engineering, 14(3),

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 12, 2017
Online Publication Date Jul 14, 2017
Publication Date Jul 14, 2017
Deposit Date Sep 14, 2017
Publicly Available Date Sep 14, 2017
Journal Journal of Bionic Engineering
Print ISSN 1672-6529
Electronic ISSN 1672-6529
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Issue 3
Keywords Wetting transitions, biomimetic surfaces, energy barrier, gravity effect, numerical study, lattice Boltzmann method
Public URL
Publisher URL


JBE paper (JBE16-155) updated.pdf (1.5 Mb)

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