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Issue 35, 2017
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Dynamical theory of the inverted cheerios effect

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Recent experiments have shown that liquid drops on highly deformable substrates exhibit mutual interactions. This is similar to the Cheerios effect, the capillary interaction of solid particles at a liquid interface, but now the roles of solid and liquid are reversed. Here we present a dynamical theory for this inverted Cheerios effect, taking into account elasticity, capillarity and the viscoelastic rheology of the substrate. We compute the velocity at which droplets attract, or repel, as a function of their separation. The theory is compared to a simplified model in which the viscoelastic dissipation is treated as a localized force at the contact line. It is found that the two models differ only at small separation between the droplets, and both of them accurately describe experimental observations.

Graphical abstract: Dynamical theory of the inverted cheerios effect

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Article information

06 Apr 2017
26 Jul 2017
First published
26 Jul 2017

Soft Matter, 2017,13, 6000-6010
Article type

Dynamical theory of the inverted cheerios effect

A. Pandey, S. Karpitschka, L. A. Lubbers, J. H. Weijs, L. Botto, S. Das, B. Andreotti and J. H. Snoeijer, Soft Matter, 2017, 13, 6000
DOI: 10.1039/C7SM00690J

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