Acta Mechanica Sinica

, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 40–61 | Cite as

Effects of hysteresis of static contact angle (HSCA) and boundary slip on the hydrodynamics of water striders

  • J. Zheng
  • B. S. Wang
  • W. Q. Chen
  • X. Y. Han
  • C. F. Li
  • J. Z. Zhang
  • K. P. Yu
Research Paper

Abstract

It is known that contact lines keep relatively still on solids until static contact angles exceed an interval of hysteresis of static contact angle (HSCA), and contact angles keep changing as contact lines relatively slide on the solid. Here, the effects of HSCA and boundary slip were first distinguished on the micro-curvature force (MCF) on the seta. Hence, the total MCF is partitioned into static and dynamic MCFs correspondingly. The static MCF was found proportional to the HSCA and related with the asymmetry of the micro-meniscus near the seta. The dynamic MCF, exerting on the relatively sliding contact line, is aroused by the boundary slip. Based on the Blake–Haynes mechanism, the dynamic MCF was proved important for water walking insects with legs slower than the minimum wave speed \(23\,\hbox {cm}\cdot \hbox {s}^{-1}\). As insects brush the water by laterally swinging legs backwards, setae on the front side of the leg are pulled and the ones on the back side are pushed to cooperatively propel bodies forward. If they pierce the water surface by vertically swinging legs downwards, setae on the upside of the legs are pulled, and the ones on the downside are pushed to cooperatively obtain a jumping force. Based on the dependency between the slip length and shear rate, the dynamic MCF was found correlated with the leg speed U, as \(F\sim C_{1}U+C_{2} U^{2+\varepsilon }\), where \(C_{1}\) and \(C_{2}\) are determined by the dimple depth. Discrete points on this curve could give fitted relations as \(F\sim U^{b}\) (Suter et al., J. Exp. Biol. 200, 2523–2538, 1997). Finally, the axial torque on the inclined and partially submerged seta was found determined by the surface tension, contact angle, HSCA, seta width, and tilt angle. The torque direction coincides with the orientation of the spiral grooves of the seta, which encourages us to surmise it is a mechanical incentive for the formation of the spiral morphology of the setae of water striders.

Keywords

Seta Water strider Hysteresis of static contact angle (HSCA) Boundary slip 

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Copyright information

© The Chinese Society of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics; Institute of Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Zheng
    • 1
  • B. S. Wang
    • 2
  • W. Q. Chen
    • 2
  • X. Y. Han
    • 1
  • C. F. Li
    • 1
  • J. Z. Zhang
    • 3
  • K. P. Yu
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Energy and Power EngineeringJiangsu UniversityZhenjiangChina
  2. 2.China Ship Scientific Research CenterWuxiChina
  3. 3.School of AstronauticsHarbin Institute of TechnologyHarbinChina

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