The Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford, Eprints Archive

Wrinkling in the deflation of elastic bubbles

Aumaitre, E. and Knoche, S. and Cicuta, P. and Vella, D. (2012) Wrinkling in the deflation of elastic bubbles. EPL . (Submitted)

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Abstract

The protein hydrophobin HFBII self-assembles into very elastic films at the surface of water; these films wrinkle readily upon compression. We demonstrate and study this wrinkling instability in the context of non-planar interfaces by forming HFBII layers at the surface of bubbles; the interfaces are then compressed by deflating the bubble. By varying the initial concentration of the hydrophobin solutions, we are able to show that buckling occurs at a critical packing fraction of protein molecules on the surface. Independent experiments show that at this packing fraction the interface has a finite positive surface tension, and not zero surface tension as is usually assumed at buckling. We attribute this non-zero wrinkling tension to the finite elasticity of these interfaces. We develop a simple geometrical model for the evolution of the wrinkle length with further deflation, and show that wrinkles start close to the needle used for deflation and grow rapidly towards the mid-plane of the bubble. This geometrical model yields predictions for the length of wrinkles in good agreement with experiments, independently of the rheological properties of the adsorbed layer.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:D - G > General
Research Groups:Oxford Centre for Collaborative Applied Mathematics
ID Code:1571
Deposited By:Peter Hudston
Deposited On:27 Jul 2012 08:35
Last Modified:27 Jul 2012 08:35

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