Leidenfrost point reduction on micro-patterned metallic surface

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Droplets are able to levitate when deposited over a hot surface exceeding a critical temperature. This is known as the Leidenfrost effect. This phenomenon occurs when the surface is heated above the so-called Leidenfrost point (LFP), above which the vapor film between the droplet and hot surface is able to levitate the droplet. Such a critical temperature depends on several factors. One of the most studied parameters has been the surface roughness. Almost all of the experimental studies in the literature have concluded that the LFP increases with the roughness. According to these results, it seems that the roughness is detrimental for the stability of the vapor film. In contrast with these results, we present here a micropatterned surface that significantly reduces the LFP. The temperature increase, relative to the boiling point, required to reach the LFP is 70% lower than that on the flat surface. The reasons for such an effect are qualitatively and quantitatively discussed with a simple semiempirical model. This result can be relevant to save energy in applications that take advantage of the Leidenfrost effect for drop control or drag reduction.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15106-15110
Issue number42
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • METIS-288461
  • IR-81840


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