Pierre-Gilles de Gennes, Françoise Brochard-Wyart, David Quéré, 2003
When I started the Surface Roughness, Texture and Tribology class some 20 years ago I searched for good descriptions of the physics of surface wetting, beading, etc. I wanted to include an introduction to these topics in the class that would serve as a conduit to more thorough sources. Unfortunately, I could only find high level physics and chemistry texts which, while interesting, were very academic and more focused on the math than the applications.
Capillarity and Wetting Phenomena, however, was like finding a gold mine. This book is a pleasure to read, and you don’t need to be a chemist or physicist to get the points. Capillarity devotes an entire chapter explaining how surface texture affects wetting…while most of the other text didn’t mention the topic at all!
Throughout the book are many excellent examples and explanatory sketches. The original text is written in French, but Axel Reisinger’s translation really gets the spirit (and poetry!) of the original.
If you’ve ever wondered why liquid rises up a capillary tube, why paint spreads on a surface, or why water forms streams or droplets depending on the surface, I highly recommend this read!
You may also want to consider the Surface Energy, Wetting & Surface Roughness module from our online Surface Roughness, Texture, and Tribology course (udemy.com).
And, for a deep dive into all things surface-related, consider attending our upcoming, 2 ½ day, live, in-person Surface Roughness, Texture, and Tribology course in May 2023! Registration is open now!