A wide variety of natural phenomena and technological applications involve flow, transport and chemical reactions taking place on or near fluid-solid or fluid-fluid interfaces. From gravity currents under water and lava flows to heat and mass transport processes in engineering applications and to the rapidly developing field of microfluidics. Both equilibrium properties of a fluid and transportcoefficients are modified in the vicinity of interfaces. The effect of these changes is crucial in the behavior of ultra-thin fluidfilms and fluid motion in microchannels of micro-electromechanical systems, but is essential as well in macroscopic phenomena involving interfacial singularities, such as thin-film rupture and motion of three-phase contact lines associated e.g. with droplet spreading. Interface boundaries are mesoscopic structures. While material properties vary smoothly at macroscopic distances from an interface, gradients in the normal direction of conserved parameters, such as density, are steep with strong variations as the molecular scale in the neighborhood of the interface is approached. This brings about a contradiction between the need in macroscopic description and a necessity to take into consideration microscopic factors that come to influence the fluid motion and transport on incommensurately larger scales. The aim of the proposed research is to develop a class of novel continuous models bridging the gap between molecular dynamics and conventional hydrodynamics and applicable at mesoscopic distances from gas-liquid and fluid-solid interfaces. A combination of analytical techniques, numerical modeling and computer-aided multiscale analysis will be employed. The results of the proposed work will greatly contribute to the fundamental understanding of mesoscopic non-equilibrium phenomena in the vicinity of interfaces and to the development of novel computational methods combining the advantages of molecular and continuous models.
Field of science
- /social sciences/social and economic geography/transport
Call for proposal
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