We consider the deformation and burst of small fluid droplets in steady linear, two-dimensional motions of a second immiscible fluid. Experiments using a computer-controlled, four-roll mill to investigate the effect of flow type are described, and the results compared with predictions of several available asymptotic deformation and burst theories, as well as numerical calculations. The comparison clarifies the range of validity of the theories, and demonstrates that they provide quite adequate predictions over a wide range of viscosity ratio, capillary number, and flow type.
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