Europhys. Lett.
Volume 62, Number 6, June 2003
Page(s) 897 - 903
Section Interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology
Published online 01 June 2003
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2003-00457-7
Europhys. Lett., 62 (6) , pp. 897-903 (2003)

Buckling instability induced by polymer solution drying

L. Pauchard and C. Allain

Laboratoire FAST, Bât. 502, Campus Universitaire - 91405 Orsay Cedex, France

(Received 19 August 2002; accepted in final form 22 April 2003)

The large shape distortions that occur during the drying of sessile drops of polymer solution are shown to be related to a buckling instability. As solvent evaporates, polymers accumulate near the vapor/drop interface and, depending on the experimental conditions, can form a glassy skin which bends as the volume it encloses decreases. A comparison of the times that characterize drying kinetics and glassy skin formation enables us to predict instability occurrence. Good agreement is found with measurements performed at different polymer concentrations, drop volumes and drying rates.

83.80.Rs - Polymer solutions.
46.32.+x - Static buckling and instability.
64.70.Pf - Glass transitions.

© EDP Sciences 2003