Droplet Probe for Characterization of Advancing and Receding Contact Angles of Single Fibers

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Abstract

Characterizing the wetting properties of fibers is crucial for many research and industry applications, including textiles for water-oil separation and composite materials. Those fibers are often soft, typically tens of micrometers in diameter but millimeters in length, making manipulation and characterization difficult. Contact angles of single fibers are usually determined by droplet shape analysis or force-based Wilhelmy method. However, these methods are unable to accurately measure contact angles above 60∘ or ensure reliable control of the liquid-fiber interaction process, especially for soft fibers prone to bending. Consequently, reliable characterization of the advancing and receding contact angles of single fibers remains a challenge. Here we report a novel method for characterizing the advancing and receding contact angles of both soft and rigid single fibers using a millimeter-sized droplet probe affixed to a disk and a numerical model of the system. By analyzing side-view images, we extract key geometrical parameters of the disk-droplet-fiber system, which, when used in detailed simulations, allows estimating the contact angle of fibers ranging from 20∘ to 140∘ . We applied this method to characterize three distinct micro-fibers: a highly hydrophilic rigid borosilicate glass fiber, a mildly hydrophilic soft PET fiber, and a rigid hydrophobic tungsten wire coated with a commercial super-repellent coating.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of MARSS 2023 - 6th International Conference on Manipulation, Automation, and Robotics at Small Scales
EditorsSinan Haliyo, Mokrane Boudaoud, Mohammad A. Qasaimeh, Sergej Fatikow
PublisherIEEE
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)979-8-3503-3039-7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023
MoE publication typeA4 Conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Manipulation, Automation and Robotics at Small Scales - Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Duration: 9 Oct 202313 Oct 2023

Conference

ConferenceInternational Conference on Manipulation, Automation and Robotics at Small Scales
Abbreviated titleMARSS
Country/TerritoryUnited Arab Emirates
CityAbu Dhabi
Period09/10/202313/10/2023

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