Thermocapillary breakdown of falling liquid films at high Reynolds numbers

Mark S. Bohn*, Stephen H. Davis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


This paper presents a new correlation in which the heat flux required to break a falling liquid film can be determined from the film Reynolds number. The correlation is based on the balance of local forces in the substrate region for high-Reynolds number films. Validation of the correlation required experimental data for breakdown of wavy liquid films at a significantly higher Reynolds number and heat flux than have been presented in the past. These data are also presented in the paper. The results show that the correlation collapses the experimental data for three liquids with widely varying physical properties at film Reynolds numbers at up to about 104. This correlation gives one the ability to predict the thermocapillary breakdown of wavy falling films at high Reynolds number, high heat flux, and over a wide range of fluid properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1875-1881
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer
Issue number7
StatePublished - May 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes

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