Nano Archive

Meniscus and viscous forces during normal separation of liquid-mediated contacts

Cai, Shaobiao and Bhushan, Bharat (2007) Meniscus and viscous forces during normal separation of liquid-mediated contacts. NANOTECHNOLOGY, 18 (46).

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Menisci form between two solid surfaces with the presence of an ultra-thin liquid film. Meniscus and viscous forces contribute to an adhesive force when two surfaces are separated. The adhesive force can be very large and can result in high friction, stiction and possibly high wear. The situation may become more pronounced when the contacting surfaces are ultra-smooth and the normal load is small, as is common for micro-/nanodevices. In this study, equations for meniscus and viscous forces during separation of two flat surfaces, and a sphere and a flat surface, are developed, and the corresponding adhesive forces contributed by these two types of forces are examined. The geometric meniscus curvatures and break point are theoretically determined, and the role of meniscus and viscous forces is evaluated during separation. The influence of separation distance, liquid thickness, meniscus area, separation time, liquid properties and contact angles are analyzed. Critical meniscus areas at which transition in the dominance of meniscus to viscous forces occurs for different given conditions, i.e. various initial liquid thicknesses, contact angles and designated separation time, are identified. The analysis provides a fundamental understanding of the physics of separation process, and insights into the relationships between meniscus and viscous forces. It is also valuable for the design of the interface for various devices.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Physical Science > Nanophysics
Material Science > Nanostructured materials
ID Code:6286
Deposited By:IoN
Deposited On:22 Dec 2009 10:40
Last Modified:22 Dec 2009 10:40

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