Pinch-off singularities in rotating Hele-Shaw flows at high viscosity contrast

E. Alvarez-Lacalle*, J. Casademunt, J. Eggers

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


We study the evolution of a family of dumbbell-shaped liquid patches surrounded by air inside a rotating Hele-Shaw cell with lubrication methods and numerical simulations. Depending on initial conditions, the dumbbell either stretches to infinity, pinches off at the neck to form a droplet, or collects into a circular drop at the center of rotation. Whether or not pinch-off occurs results from a subtle interplay between centrifugal and capillary forces. In particular, rotation may delay or even prevent pinch-off from occurring owing to stretching and smoothing of the fluid neck. However, frequently rotation may have the opposite effect leading to pinch-off where the relaxation toward a circular drop would be observed in an ordinary Hele-Shaw cell.

Original languageEnglish
Article number056306
JournalPhysical Review E: Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2009


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