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      Geometry dominated fluid adsorption on sculptured substrates

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          Abstract

          Experimental methods allow the shape and chemical composition of solid surfaces to be controlled at a mesoscopic level. Exposing such structured substrates to a gas close to coexistence with its liquid can produce quite distinct adsorption characteristics compared to that occuring for planar systems, which may well play an important role in developing technologies such as super-repellent surfaces or micro-fluidics. Recent studies have concentrated on adsorption of liquids at rough and heterogeneous substrates and the characterisation of nanoscopic liquid films. However, the fundamental effect of geometry has hardly been addressed. Here we show that varying the shape of the substrate can exert a profound influence on the adsorption isotherms allowing us to smoothly connect wetting and capillary condensation through a number of novel and distinct examples of fluid interfacial phenomena. This opens the possibility of tailoring the adsorption properties of solid substrates by sculpturing their surface shape.

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          Most cited references 20

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            Pearl drops

             D Quéré,  C Marzolin,  J Bico (1999)
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              Liquid morphologies on structured surfaces: from microchannels to microchips

              Liquid microchannels on structured surfaces are built up using a wettability pattern consisting of hydrophilic stripes on a hydrophobic substrate. These channels undergo a shape instability at a certain amount of adsorbed volume, from a homogeneous state with a spatially constant cross section to a state with a single bulge. This instability is quite different from the classical Rayleigh Plateau instability and represents a bifurcation between two different morphologies of constant mean curvature. The bulge state can be used to construct channel networks that could be used as fluid microchips or microreactors.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                26 October 2000
                Article
                10.1038/35039590
                cond-mat/0010419
                Custom metadata
                Nature 407,986-989 (2000)
                6 pages, 4 figures
                cond-mat

                Condensed matter

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