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DOI: 10.1615/ICHMT.2017.CHT-7.720
pages 711-720

Vered Segal
School of Mechanical Engineering, Tel-Aviv University, Ramat Aviv 6139001, Israel

Amos Ullmann
School of Mechanical Engineering The Iby and Aladar Fleischman Faculty of Engineering Tel Aviv University Ramat Aviv 69978 ISRAEL

Neima Brauner
School of Mechanical Engineering The Iby and Aladar Fleischman Faculty of Engineering Tel Aviv University Ramat Aviv 69978 ISRAEL


A numerical model based on the diffuse interface approach is developed to simulate the phase separation of binary Upper Critical Solution Temperature (UCST) mixtures with critical and off-critical compositions in 2D geometry. The modeling is intended to simulate the response of such mixtures whilst cooled into the unstable region or to the metastable region. With an off-critical composition, the initial homogeneous mixture may separate via nucleation and growth mechanism, provided it is exposed to a strong enough composition perturbation. In this study, the numerical model is used to explore the response of off-critical composition mixtures to white noise and two different forms of nuclei: a circular drop, and a 2D wavelet. The significant differences in the phase separation processes taking place with critical solution via spinodal decomposition, and off-critical compositions via nucleation and growth, are demonstrated and discussed. While a white noise perturbation in concentration suffices to trigger separation in the unstable region, nuclei exceeding a critical size are required to initiate the separation in the metastable region.

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