In this research, we reveal the transient behavior of capillary pressure as the fluid-fluid interface travels across the juncture between a converging and uniform capillary, via high-resolution CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) simulations. Simulations were performed at different wetting conditions (strong-wet and intermediate-wet) and capillary wall convergence angles. Our results demonstrate that as the angle of convergence increases, capillary pressure at the junction decreases commensurately. Moreover, in contrast to strong-wet conditions, the profile of capillary pressure at the converging-uniform capillary juncture under intermediate-wet conditions is highly non-monotonic, being characterized by a parabola-like form. This non-monotonic behavior is a manifestation of strong inertial forces governing dynamic fluid-fluid interface morphology. This yields conditions that promote the advancement of the fluid-fluid interface, as inertial forces partially nullify the capillary pressure required for the immiscible interface to enter the uniform capillary. In addition to numerical analysis detailed above, a novel theoretical stability criteria that is capable of distinguishing between stable (capillary dominated) and unstable (inertia dominated) interfacial regimes at the converging-uniform capillary juncture is also proposed. In summary, this fundamental study offers new insights into the interface invasion protocol, and paves the way for the re-evaluation of capillary junction controlled interfacial dynamics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas