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Whipping instability characterization of an electrified visco-capillary jet


The charged liquid micro-jet issued from a Taylor cone may develop a special type of non-axisymmetric instability, usually referred to in the literature as a whipping mode. This instability usually manifests itself as a series of fast and violent lashes of the charged jet, which makes its characterization in the laboratory difficult. Recently, we have found that this instability may also develop when the host medium surrounding the Taylor cone and the jet is a dielectric liquid instead of air. When the oscillations of the jet occur inside a dielectric liquid, their frequency and amplitude are much lower than those of the oscillations taking place in air. Taking advantage of this fact, we have performed a detailed experimental characterization of the whipping instability of a charged micro-jet within a dielectric liquid by recording the jet motion with a high-speed camera. Appropriate image processing yields the frequency and wavelength, among the other important characteristics, of the jet whipping as a function of the governing parameters of the experimental set-up (flow rate and applied electric field) and liquid properties. Alternatively, the results can be also written as a function of three dimensionless numbers: the capillary and electrical Bond numbers and the ratio between an electrical relaxation and residence time.

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Journal of Fluid Mechanics
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