Accumulation of particles in time-dependent thermocapillary flow in a liquid bridge. Modeling of experiments
Université Libre de Bruxelles, MRC, CP165/62, Av. F.D. Roosevelt 50, 1050 Bruxelles, Belgium
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Revised: 25 January 2011
Published online: 9 March 2011
The study addresses the phenomenon of accumulation of rigid tracer particles suspended in a time-dependent thermocapillary flow in a liquid bridge. We report the results of the three-dimensional numerical modeling of recent experiments [1,2] in a non-isothermal liquid column. Exact physical properties of both liquids and particles are used for the modeling. Two liquids are investigated: sodium nitrate (NaNO3) and n-decane (C10H22). The particles are modeled as perfect spheres suspended in already well developed time-dependent thermocapillary flow. The particle dynamics is described by the Maxey-Riley equation. The results of our simulations are in excellent agreement with the experimental observations. For the first time we reproduced numerically formation of the particle accumulation structure (PAS) both under gravity and under weightlessness conditions. Our analysis confirms the experimental observations that the existence of PAS depends on the strength of the flow field, on the ratio between liquid and particle density, and on the particle size.
© EDP Sciences, Springer-Verlag, 2011