Numerical solutions of thin-film equations for polymer flows
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We report on the numerical implementation of thin-film equations that describe the capillary-driven evolution of viscous films, in two-dimensional configurations. After recalling the general forms and features of these equations, we focus on two particular cases inspired by experiments: the leveling of a step at the free surface of a polymer film, and the leveling of a polymer droplet over an identical film. In each case, we first discuss the long-term self-similar regime reached by the numerical solution before comparing it to the experimental profile. The agreement between theory and experiment is excellent, thus providing a versatile probe for nanorheology of viscous liquids in thin-film geometries.
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