Skip to main content

Growth and collapse of a vapour bubble in a microtube: the role of thermal effects


The growth and collapse of a vapour bubble inside a microtube is studied both experimentally and theoretically. The length of the bubble, and the velocity and acceleration of its interface, are obtained from a high-speed image recording (typically 1.25 × 105 fps) for various energy inputs and two tube diameters. To understand the underlying dynamics of the system, two theoretical models are compared with experiment. A model based on a discontinuous time dependence of the vapour pressure inside the bubble is at variance with the data. It proves necessary to account in greater detail for the time dependence of the vapour pressure. A new model is proposed for this purpose which includes heat transfer in addition to inertia and viscous friction. Both the data and the model show that the vapour pressure decreases with time continuously instead of abruptly. The length, velocity and acceleration from the numerical simulations are found to be in good agreement with experimental data. Both the experiments and simulations clearly indicate that thermal effects play an important role throughout the whole growth and collapse process.

Hide All
Ajaev, V. S. & Homsy, G. M. 2006 Modeling shapes and dynamics of confined bubbles. Annu. Rev. Fluid Mech. 38, 277307.
Ajaev, V. S., Homsy, G. M. & Morris, S. J. S. 2002 Dynamic response of geometrically constrained vapour bubbles. J. Colloid Interface Sci. 254, 346354.
Allen, R. R., Meyer, J. D. & Knight, W. R. 1985 Thermodynamics and hydrodynamics of thermal ink jets. Hewlett-Packard J. 36, 2127.
Asai, A. 1989 Application of the nucleation theory to the design of bubble jet printers. Jpn. J. Appl. Phys. 28, 909915.
Asai, A. 1991 Bubble dynamics in boiling under high heat flux pulse heating. J. Heat Transfer 113, 973979.
Brennen, C. E. 1995 Cavitation and Bubble Dynamics. Oxford University Press.
Brenner, M. P., Hilgenfeldt, S. & Lohse, D. 2002 Single-bubble sonoluminescence. Rev. Mod. Phys. 74, 425484.
Jun, T. K. & Kim, C. J. 1996 Microscale pumping with traversing bubbles in microchannels. In Solid-State Sensor and Actuator Workshop, Hilton Head Island, pp. 144147.
Jun, T. K. & Kim, C. J. 1998 Valveless pumping using traversing vapour bubbles in microchannels. J. Appl. Phys. 83, 56585664.
Landau, L. D. & Lifshitz, E. M. 1980 Statistical Physics. Pergamon Press.
Mazouchi, A. & Homsy, G. M. 2000 Thermocapillary migration of long bubbles in cylindrical capillary tubes. Phys. Fluids 12, 542549.
Ohl, C. D., Arora, M., Dijkink, R., Janve, V. & Lohse, D. 2006 Surface cleaning from laser-induced cavitation bubbles. Appl. Phys. Lett. 89, 074102.
Ory, E., Yuan, H., Prosperetti, A., Popinet, S. & Zaleski, S. 2000 Growth and collapse of a vapour bubble in a narrow tube. Phys. Fluids 12 (6), 12681277.
Plesset, M. S. & Prosperetti, A. 1977 Bubble dynamics and cavitation. Annu. Rev. Fluid Mech. 9, 145185.
Yang, B. & Prosperetti, A. 2008 Vapour bubble collapse in isothermal and non-isothermal liquids. J. Fluid Mech. 601, 253279.
Yin, Z. & Prosperetti, A. 2005 a ‘blinking bubble’ micropump with microfabricated heaters. J. Micromech. Microengng 15, 16831691.
Yin, Z. & Prosperetti, A. 2005 b A microfluidic ‘blinking bubble’ pump. J. Micromech. Microengng 15, 19.
Yin, Z., Prosperetti, A. & Kim, J. 2004 Bubble growth on an impulsively powered microheater. Intl J. Heat Mass Transfer 47, 10531067.
Yuan, H. & Prosperetti, A. 1999 The pumping effect of growting and collapsing bubbles in a tube. J. Micromech. Microengng 9, 402413.
Zwaan, E., Le-Gac, S., Tsuji, K. & Ohl, C. D. 2007 Controlled cavitation in microfluidic systems. Phys. Rev. Lett. 98, 254501.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of Fluid Mechanics
  • ISSN: 0022-1120
  • EISSN: 1469-7645
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-fluid-mechanics
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed