The mechanism of the generation and sustainability of noncoalescent droplets (NCDs) was investigated at the liquid−air interface of the same liquids in the context of inkjet printing. The Weber number (We) was used to correlate and predict the generation of NCDs in a falling-drop experiment. This study found that NCDs can be generated for We higher than 130. We values of this magnitude are relevant to inkjet printing. The formation of NCD can reduce the print quality because the NCD droplets roll away uncontrollably from the print target, thus reducing print resolution. This study also used a simple experiment to demonstrate the physical origin of the NCD, which is the existence of a gaseous cushion between the liquid drop and the liquid−air interface that supports the drop. The gaseous cushion has a thickness greater than the van der Waals attraction range (around 10 nm).
Kham, M. S., Kannangara, D. S., Shen, W., & Garnier, G. (2008). Isothermal Noncoalescence of Liquid Droplets at the Air-Liquid Interface. Langmuir, 24(7), 3199 - 3204. https://doi.org/10.1021/la7028627