Phase field computations for ternary fluid flows

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117 Citations (Scopus)


We present a new phase field model for three-component immiscible liquid flows with surface tension. In the phase field approach, the classical sharp-interface between the two immiscible fluids is replaced by a transition region across which the properties of fluids change continuously. The proposed method incorporates a chemical potential which can eliminate the unphysical phase field profile and a continuous surface tension force formulation from which we can calculate the pressure field directly from the governing equations. The capabilities of the method are demonstrated with several examples. We compute the ternary phase separation via spinodal decomposition, equilibrium phase field profiles, pressure field distribution, and a three-interface contact angle resulting from a spreading liquid lens on an interface. The numerical results show excellent agreement with analytical solutions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4779-4788
Number of pages10
JournalComputer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering
Issue number45-48
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Sept 15
Externally publishedYes


  • Continuum surface tension
  • Interfacial tension
  • Navier-Stokes equation
  • Nonlinear multigrid method
  • Phase field model
  • Ternary Cahn-Hilliard equation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Computer Science Applications


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