Statics and dynamics of electrowetting on pillar-arrayed surfaces at the nanoscale
QZ Yuan and YP Zhao, NANOSCALE, 7, 2561-2567 (2015).
The statics and dynamics of electrowetting on pillar-arrayed surfaces at the nanoscale are studied using molecular dynamics simulations. Under a gradually increased electric field, a droplet is pushed by the electromechanical force to spread, and goes through the Cassie state, the Cassie-to-Wenzel wetting transition and the Wenzel state, which can be characterized by the electrowetting number at the micro-scale eta(m). The expansion of the liquid is direction-dependent and influenced by the surface topology. A positive voltage is induced in the bulk droplet, while a negative one is induced in the liquid confined among the pillars, which makes the liquid hard to spread and further polarize. Based on the molecular kinetic theory and the wetting states, theoretical models have been proposed to comprehend the physical mechanisms in the statics and dynamics of electrowetting, and are validated by our simulations. Our findings may help to understand the electrowetting on microtextured surfaces and assist the future design of engineered surfaces in practical applications.
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