Evaporation of non-circular droplets

Wray, Alexander W. and Moore, Madeleine R. (2023) Evaporation of non-circular droplets. Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 961. A11. ISSN 0022-1120 (https://doi.org/10.1017/jfm.2023.229)

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The dynamics of thin, non-circular droplets evaporating in the diffusion-limited regime are examined. The challenging non-rectilinear mixed boundary problem this poses is solved using a novel asymptotic approach and an asymptotic expansion for the evaporative flux from the free surface of the droplet is found. While theoretically valid only for droplets that are close to circular, it is demonstrated that the methodology can successfully be applied to droplets with a wide variety of footprint shapes, including polygons and highly nonconvex domains. As our solution for the flux fundamentally represents a novel result in potential theory, the applications are numerous, as the mixed boundary value problem arises in fields as diverse as electrostatics and contact mechanics. Here, we demonstrate the practicality of our result by considering the analyticallytractable case of deposition of solute from large droplets in detail, including a matched asymptotic analysis to resolve the pressure, streamlines and deposition up to second order.