Energy stable finite element scheme for simulating flow dynamics of droplets on non-homogeneous surfaces

Filip Ivančić, Maxim Solovchuk

An energy stable finite element scheme within arbitrary Lagrangian Eulerian (ALE) framework is derived for simulating the dynamics of millimetric droplets in contact with solid surfaces. Supporting surfaces considered may exhibit non--homogeneous properties which are incorporated into system through generalized Navier boundary conditions (GNBC). Numerical scheme is constructed such that the counterpart of (continuous) energy balance holds on the discrete level. This ensures that no spurious energy is introduced into the discrete system, i.e. the discrete formulation is stable in the energy norm. The newly proposed scheme is numerically validated to confirm the theoretical predictions. Of a particular interest is the case of droplet on a non-homogeneous inclined surface. This case shows the capabilities of the scheme to capture the complex droplet dynamics (sliding and rolling) while maintaining stability during the long time simulation.

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