- Physical Review Fluids Journal
- January 2020
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- The structure of the flow induced by the van der Waals destabilization of a nonwetting liquid film placed on a solid substrate is studied by means of theory and numerical simulations of the Stokes equations. Our analysis reveals that lubrication theory, which yields hmin∝tau1/5, where hmin is the minimum film thickness and tau is the time until breakup, cannot be used to describe the local flow close to rupture. Instead, the slender lubrication solution is shown to experience a crossover to a universal self-similar solution of the Stokes equations that yields hmin∝tau1/3, with an opening angle of 37∘ off the solid.