Floating mechanism of a small liquid marble
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Flotation of small solid objects and liquid droplets on water is critical to natural and industrial activities. This paper reports the floating mechanism of liquid marbles, or liquid droplets coated with hydrophobic microparticles. We used X-ray computed tomography (XCT) to acquire cross-sectional images of the floating liquid marble and interface between the different phases. We then analysed the shape of the liquid marble and the angles at the three-phase contact line (TPCL). We found that the small floating liquid marbles follow the mechanism governing the flotation of solid objects in terms of surface tension forces. However, the contact angles formed and deformation of the liquid marble resemble that of a sessile liquid droplet on a thin, elastic solid. For small liquid marbles, the contact angle varies with volume due to the deformability of the interface.
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Nanotechnology not elsewhere classified