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Computational Modelling of Leidenfrost Fractals

Supervisors: James Sprittles (Mathematics), Duncan Lockerby (Engineering)

The Leidenfrost effect levitates small liquid drops above hot surfaces via a strong evaporative flux and is seen when water droplets skate across a hot pan. Understanding when this occurs is critical for the efficiency of numerous technologies, including the spray-cooling of next-generation electronics that our collaborators at Nokia Bell Labs are developing. Experiments at Bell have recently revealed counter-intuitive contact dynamics that display fractal surface wetting in competition with the nanoscale vapour flow under impacting droplets. This project will use unconventional mathematical modelling combined with computational techniques to gain unprecedented insight into this phenomenon combined with theory-driven targeted experiments at Bell.

Computational Modelling of Leidenfrost Fractals