How ambient conditions affect the Leidenfrost temperature

Michiel A.J. van Limbeek*, Olinka Ramírez-Soto, Andrea Prosperetti, Detlef Lohse*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
34 Downloads (Pure)


By sufficiently heating a solid, a sessile drop can be prevented from contacting the surface by floating on its own vapour. While certain aspects of the dynamics of this so-called Leidenfrost effect are understood, it is still unclear why a minimum temperature (the Leidenfrost temperatureTL) is required before the effect manifests itself, what properties affect this temperature, and what physical principles govern it. Here we investigate the dependence of the Leidenfrost temperature on the ambient conditions: first, by increasing (decreasing) the ambient pressure, we find an increase (decrease) inTL. We propose a rescaling of the temperature which allows us to collapse the curves for various organic liquids and water onto a single master curve, which yields a powerful tool to predictTL. Secondly, increasing the ambient temperature stabilizes meta-stable, levitating drops at increasingly lower temperatures belowTL. This observation reveals the importance of thermal Marangoni flow in describing the Leidenfrost effect accurately. Our results shed new light on the mechanisms playing a role in the Leidenfrost effect and may help to eventually predict the Leidenfrost temperature and achieve complete understanding of the phenomenon, however, many questions still remain open.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3207-3215
Number of pages9
JournalSoft matter
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 21 Mar 2021


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