Using the Surface Evolver to model droplet formation processes in membrane emulsification

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A model was developed to describe the droplet formation mechanism in membrane emulsification from the point of view of Gibbs free energy with the help of the Surface Evolver, which is an interactive finite element program for the study of interfaces shaped by Surface tension. A program to test the model was written and run which allows the user to track the droplet shape as it grows, to identify the point of instability due to free energy, and thus predict droplet size. The inputs of the program are pore geometry, oil-aqueous phase interfacial tension, and contact angle. The model reasonably predicted droplet sizes for oblong-shaped pores under quiescent conditions where the force balance approach is not applicable. The model was validated against experimental conditions from the literature where the average error of the predictions compared to the mean droplet sizes was 8%. (C) 2004 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Food Engineering


  • Surface Evolver, Membrane emulsification, Gibbs free energy, Modelling, Droplet formation
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-185
JournalJournal of Colloid and Interface Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Publication categoryResearch