Simulation of phase separation with temperature-dependent viscosity using lattice Boltzmann method
Functional Soft Matter & Materials Group, Key Laboratory of Space Applied Physics and Chemistry of Ministry of Education, School of Science, Northwestern Polytechnical University, 710129, Xi’an, China
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Accepted: 4 December 2017
Published online: 27 December 2017
This paper presents an exploration of the phase separation behavior and pattern formation in a binary fluid with temperature-dependent viscosity via a coupled lattice Boltzmann method (LBM). By introducing a viscosity-temperature relation into the LBM, the coupling effects of the viscosity-temperature coefficient , initial viscosity and thermal diffusion coefficient , on the phase separation were successfully described. The calculated results indicated that an increase in initial viscosity and viscosity-temperature coefficient, or a decrease in the thermal diffusion coefficient, can lead to the orientation of isotropic growth fronts over a wide range of viscosity. The results showed that droplet-type phase structures and lamellar phase structures with domain orientation parallel or perpendicular to the walls can be obtained in equilibrium by controlling the initial viscosity, thermal diffusivity, and the viscosity-temperature coefficient. Furthermore, the dataset was rearranged for growth kinetics of domain growth and thermal diffusion fronts in a plot by the spherically averaged structure factor and the ratio of separated and continuous phases. The analysis revealed two different temporal regimes: spinodal decomposition and domain growth stages, which further quantified the coupled effects of temperature and viscosity on the evolution of temperature-dependent phase separation. These numerical results provide guidance for setting optimum temperature ranges to obtain expected phase separation structures for systems with temperature-dependent viscosity.
Key words: Flowing Matter: Liquids and Complex Fluids
© EDP Sciences, SIF, Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature, 2017