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Effect of viscoelastic fluids on bubble tunneling rupture behavior in microchannels

Wei Zhang, Shao-Bai Li, Jing-Bo Ji, Manju L. Bhusal, and Lei Wang

College of Energy and Environment, Shenyang Aerospace University, Shenyang, China



Received: 12 April 2023  Accepted: 6 June 2023


This paper presents a numerical simulation of the tunneling rupture behavior of bubbles in microchannels using OpenFOAM. The fluid properties were characterized by the Giesekus model, and the interface was tracked by the volume of fluid (VOF) method. The effects of relaxation time ╬╗ and flow velocity u on the bubble tunneling rupture behavior were examined. The results indicated that the axial length of the bubble first increases and then remains constant as the relaxation time increases. The presence of elastic force accelerates the neck refinement in the pinch-off stage. In viscoelastic fluids, the head of the bubble is closer to the inner wall than in Newtonian fluids, influenced by the first normal stress difference. Furthermore, the tail of the bubble changes from convex to concave, and the time for the bubble to reach the rupture stage accelerates with increasing flow velocity, shortening the bubble rupture cycle. The effect of the bubble rupture period was also scrutinized at various Weissenberg numbers. The results showed that the bubble rupture period increases with the Weissenberg number, indicating that the presence of elasticity slows down the bubble rupture process.

Keywords: Y-junction microchannel; Bubble rupture; Viscoelastic fluids; Interfacial phenomena; OpenFOAM

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1007/s11696-023-02957-3


Chemical Papers 77 (11) 6543–6556 (2023)

Tuesday, June 18, 2024

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