Interferometry and Simulation of the Thin Liquid Film between a Free-Rising Bubble and a Glass Substrate

Ivan Uriev Vakarelski, Kenneth Langley, Fan Yang, Sigurdur T Thoroddsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Because of their practical importance and complex underlying physics, the thin liquid films formed between colliding bubbles or droplets have long been the subject of experimental investigations and theoretical modeling. Here, we examine the possibility of accurately predicting the dynamics of the thin liquid film drainage using numerical simulations when compared to an experimental investigation of millimetric bubbles free-rising in pure water and colliding with a flat glass interface. A high-speed camera is used to track the bubble bounce trajectory, and a second high-speed camera together with a pulsed laser is used for interferometric determination of the shape and evolution of the thin liquid film profile during the bounce. The numerical simulations are conducted with the open source Gerris flow solver. The simulation reliability was first confirmed by comparison with the experimental bubble bounce trajectory and bubble shape evolution during the bounce. We further demonstrate that the simulation predicted time evolution for the shape of the thin liquid film profiles is in excellent agreement with the high-speed interferometry measured profiles for the entire experimentally accessible film size range. Finally, we discuss the implications of using numerical simulation together with theoretical modeling for resolving the complex processes of high velocity bubble and droplet collisions.
Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Feb 7 2022

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2022-02-09
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): URF/1/3723-01-01
Acknowledgements: We acknowledge Dr. Er Qiang Li for assistance in preliminary measurements. We acknowledge the use of the Gerris solver in our investigation. The experimental and computational work was supported by the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) under grant URF/1/3723-01-01.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Spectroscopy
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Electrochemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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