Journal of Statistical Physics

, Volume 122, Issue 6, pp 1261–1291 | Cite as

Thin-Film Flow Influenced by Thermal Noise

  • Günther GrünEmail author
  • Klaus Mecke
  • Markus Rauscher


We study the influence of thermal fluctuations on the dewetting dynamics of thin liquid films. Starting from the incompressible Navier-Stokes equations with thermal noise, we derive a fourth-order degenerate parabolic stochastic partial differential equation which includes a conservative, multiplicative noise term—the stochastic thin-film equation. Technically, we rely on a long-wave-approximation and Fokker–Planck-type arguments. We formulate a discretization method and give first numerical evidence for our conjecture that thermal fluctuations are capable of accelerating film rupture and that discrepancies with respect to time-scales between physical experiments and deterministic numerical simulations can be resolved by taking noise effects into account.

Key Words

wetting microfluidics thin film flow stochastic hydrodynamics 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Angewandte MathematikUniversität BonnBonnGermany
  2. 2.Institut für Theoretische PhysikUniversität Erlangen-NürnbergErlangenGermany
  3. 3.Max-Planck-Institut für MetallforschungStuttgartGermany
  4. 4.ITAPUniversität StuttgartStuttgartGermany

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