Evaporation-Induced Crystallization of Surfactants in Sessile Multicomponent Droplets

Yaxing Li, Valentin Salvator, Herman Wijshoff, Michel Versluis, Detlef Lohse*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
97 Downloads (Pure)


Surfactants have been widely studied and used in controlling droplet evaporation. In this work, we observe and study the crystallization of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) within an evaporating glycerol-water mixture droplet. The crystallization is induced by the preferential evaporation of water, which decreases the solubility of SDS in the mixture. As a consequence, the crystals shield the droplet surface and cease the evaporation. The universality of the evaporation characteristics for a range of droplet sizes is revealed by applying a diffusion model, extended by Raoult's law. To describe the nucleation and growth of the crystals, we employ the 2-dimensional crystallization model of Weinberg [J. Non-Cryst. Solids 1991, 134, 116]. The results of this model compare favorably to our experimental results. Our findings may inspire the community to reconsider the role of high concentration of surfactants in a multicomponent evaporation system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7545-7552
Number of pages8
Issue number26
Early online date15 Jun 2020
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jul 2020


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