Experimental verification of the formation mechanism for pillar arrays in nanofilms subject to large thermal gradients

Euan McLeod, Yu Liu, Sandra M. Troian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations

Abstract

The free surface of molten nanofilms is known to undergo spontaneous formation of periodic protrusions when exposed to a large transverse thermal gradient. Early time measurements of the array pitch and growth rate in polymer melts confirm a formation process based on a long wavelength thermocapillary instability and not electrostatic attraction or acoustic phonon driven growth as previously believed. We find excellent agreement with theoretical predictions provided the nanofilm out-of-plane thermal conductivity is several times larger than bulk, an enhancement suggestive of polymer chain alignment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number175501
JournalPhysical review letters
Volume106
Issue number17
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 25 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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