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Surfactants in two-phase flow

Lam, A (University of Warwick)
Monday 23 June 2014, 16:30-17:00

Seminar Room 1, Newton Institute


Co-authors: Harald Garcke (Universitat Regensburg), Bjorn Stinner (University of Warwick)

Emulsification is an important industrial process that involves mixing two or more fluids that normally are unmixable. More precisely, in the process of emulsification, it is desirable to have stable dispersions of one fluid in another. Common examples of emulsions are milk, fire extinguishers and hand cream. The mixture is thermodynamically unstable and will progressively revert back to their unmixed states over time. Surface active agents (or surfactants) are often added to increase the stability of the mixture and hence there is great interest, especially in industrial applications, to understand the influence of surfactants on the dynamics of multi-fluid systems.

In this talk, I will outline the derivation of two new models on soluble surfactants in two phase flow. The first is a sharp interface model that describes the interfaces with moving hypersurfaces, and the second is a phase field model. Both models are thermodynamically consistent and generalise existing models in the literature. I will then discuss the relationship between two models, which is supported with some numerical simulations.


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