Drops sitting on a tilted plate: Receding and advancing pinning

Tung He Chou, Siang Jie Hong, Yu Jane Sheng, Heng Kwong Tsao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


The wetting behavior of a liquid drop sitting on an inclined plane is investigated experimentally and theoretically. Using Surface Evolver, the numerical simulations are performed based on the liquid-induced defect model, in which only two thermodynamic parameters (solid-liquid interfacial tensions before and after wetting) are required. A drop with contact angle (CA) equal to θ is first placed on a horizontal plate, and then the plate is tilted. Two cases are studied: (i) θ is adjusted to the advancing CA (θ a) before tilting, and (ii) θ is adjusted to the receding CA (θ r) before tilting. In the first case, the uphill CA declines and the downhill CA remains unchanged upon inclination. When the tilted drop stays at rest, the pinning of the receding part of the contact line (receding pinning) and the depinning of the advancing part of the contact line (advancing depinning) are observed. The free energy analysis reveals that upon inclination, the reduction of the solid-liquid free energy dominates over the increment of the liquid-gas free energy associated with shape deformation. In the second case, the downhill CA grows and the uphill CA remains the same upon inclination. Advancing pinning and receding depinning are noted for the tilted drop at rest. The free energy analysis indicates that upon inclination, the decrease of the liquid-gas free energy compensates the increment of the solid-liquid free energy. The experimental results are in good agreement with those of simulations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5158-5166
Number of pages9
Issue number11
StatePublished - 20 Mar 2012


Dive into the research topics of 'Drops sitting on a tilted plate: Receding and advancing pinning'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this