Microscale Marangoni Surfers

K. Dietrich, N.O. Jaensson (Corresponding author), I. Buttinoni, G. Volpe, L. Isa

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We apply laser light to induce the asymmetric heating of Janus colloids adsorbed at water-oil interfaces and realize active micrometric “Marangoni surfers”. The coupling of temperature and surfactant concentration gradients generates Marangoni stresses leading to self-propulsion. Particle velocities span four orders of magnitude, from microns/s to cm/s, depending on laser power and surfactant concentration. Experiments are rationalized by finite elements simulations, defining different propulsion regimes relative to the magnitude of the thermal and solutal Marangoni stress components.
Original languageEnglish
Article number098001
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 28 Aug 2020
Externally publishedYes


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