Evaporation-Driven Low Reynolds Number Flows

Evaporation of a polymer solution is widely used in many industrial processes such as solvent-casting, microneedle fabrication, ink-jet printing, adhesive bonding and also painting and coating purposes. The microfluidics involved during this evaporation process can affect the shape and properties of the final dry film. Different flow phenomena including evaporation-driven convective transport and Marangoni flow are involved in thin-film evaporation of polymer solutions. We investigate viscous vortices that can be generated during the evaporation process. Optical measurement techniques such as micro particle image velocimetry (PIV) and micro laser induced fluorescence (LIF) are being used to measure the evaporation induced velocity field and polymer concentration field over time.