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Crossover From First-Order to Critical Wetting: Short-Range Tricritical Wetting



David J. Ross, D Bonn, A I. Posazhennikova, J O. Indekeu, J Meunier


We study wetting in liquid mixtures of methanol and the n-alkanes. Mixing alkanes of different chain lengths, we can examine the crossover between critical (continuous) and first-order (discontinuous) wetting transitions. Measurements of the film thickness and surface specific heat exponent indicate that for carbon number n between 11 (undecane) and 9 (nonane), there is a crossover from first-order to critical wetting with a tricritical wetting point between an effective alkane carbon number of 9.6 and 10. The observed variation of the specific heat exponent in the tricritical region agrees fairly well with the predictions of a simple mean-field theoretic model with only short-ranged interactions.
Physical Review Letters


alkane, contact angle, critical wetting, methanol, uppercritical dimension, wetting


Ross, D. , Bonn, D. , Posazhennikova, A. , Indekeu, J. and Meunier, J. (2001), Crossover From First-Order to Critical Wetting: Short-Range Tricritical Wetting, Physical Review Letters (Accessed April 25, 2024)
Created October 22, 2001, Updated February 19, 2017