Publisher DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1119352109
Title: Anomalous front broadening during spontaneous imbibition in a matrix with elongated pores
Language: English
Authors: Gruener, Simon 
Sadjadi, Zeinab 
Hermes, Helen E. 
Kityk, Andriy V. 
Knorr, Klaus 
Egelhaaf, Stefan U. 
Rieger, Heiko 
Huber, Patrick  
Keywords: Computer simulations; Interface roughening; Liquid imbibition; Neutron radiography; Porous media
Issue Date: 26-Jun-2012
Publisher: National Academy of Sciences
Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 26 (109): 10245-10250 (2012)
Abstract (english): 
During spontaneous imbibition, a wetting liquid is drawn into a porous medium by capillary forces. In systems with comparable pore length and diameter, such as paper and sand, the front of the propagating liquid forms a continuous interface. Sections of this interface advance in a highly correlated manner due to an effective surface tension, which restricts front broadening. Here we investigate water imbibition in a nanoporous glass (Vycor) in which the pores are much longer than they are wide. In this case, no continuous liquid-vapor interface with coalesced menisci can form. Anomalously fast imbibition front roughening is experimentally observed by neutron imaging. We propose a theoretical pore-network model, whose structural details are adapted to the microscopic pore structure of Vycor glass and show that it displays the same large-scale roughening characteristics as observed in the experiment. The model predicts that menisci movements are uncorrelated, indicating that despite the connectivity of the network the smoothening effect of surface tension on the imbibition front roughening is negligible. These results suggest a new universality class of imbibition behavior, which is expected to occur in any matrix with elongated, interconnected pores of random radii.
ISSN: 0027-8424
Journal: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 
Institute: Werkstoffphysik und -technologie M-22 
Document Type: Article
Project: Biokatalyse2021 
GK1166 ‘‘Biocatalysis in non-conventional media" 
More Funding information: German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)
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