Spreading dynamics of polymer nanodroplets

DR Heine and GS Grest and EB Webb, PHYSICAL REVIEW E, 68, 061603 (2003).

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.68.061603

The spreading of polymer droplets is studied using molecular dynamics simulations. To study the dynamics of both the precursor foot and the bulk droplet, large hemispherical drops of 200 000 monomers are simulated using a bead-spring model for polymers of chain length 10, 20, and 40 monomers per chain. We compare spreading on flat and atomistic surfaces, chain length effects, and different applications of the Langevin and dissipative particle dynamics thermostats. We find diffusive behavior for the precursor foot and good agreement with the molecular kinetic model of droplet spreading using both flat and atomistic surfaces. Despite the large system size and long simulation time relative to previous simulations, we find that even larger systems are required to observe hydrodynamic behavior in the hemispherical spreading droplet.

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