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Atomization and Sprays
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ISSN Imprimir: 1044-5110
ISSN En Línea: 1936-2684

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Atomization and Sprays

DOI: 10.1615/AtomizSpr.2012004070
pages 23-35

INFLUENCE OF AIR-DRAFT ON FABRICATION OF POLYURETHANE THIN FILMS VIA ULTRASONIC ATOMIZATION

Anandh Balakrishnan
School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma 73019, USA
Mrinal C. Saha
School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma 73019, USA

SINOPSIS

In this article we report the developments and improvements in our ultrasound-assisted spray deposition system for polymer thin films and potentially nanoparticle-based coatings, organic device printing. Specifically, we focus on the development of a homogenous microstructure and uniform thickness of elastomeric thermoplastic polyurethane films. All film specimens have been obtained between 4 and 16 μm. We have devised and implemented a low-pressure concentric air-draft attachment with our existing setup to achieve this goal. We have schematically suggested a possible mechanism for the evolution of the spray during the deposition process. This mechanism is one where the spray core is dragged or pulled in the direction of the eight draft tubes. Varying the air pressure changes the width and shape of the spray. These visual observations have been schematically reported. Varying the liquid-to-air ratio between 25 and 150 μL/min varied the droplet numbers (a few to several hundreds) and diameters (130 μm to > 650 μm), indicating that coalescence can be controlled. Optical microscopy of our fully developed thin films (2, 6, and 10 layers) revealed a range of droplet diameters between 80 and 200 μm. This indicated that the deposition system was precise and quantified a reduction in the time and effort involved in fabricating these films (relative to not using a draft for the same process).


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