Sliding three-phase contact line of printed droplets for single-crystal arrays

Minxuan Kuang, Lei Wu, Yifan Li, Meng Gao, Xingye Zhang, Lei Jiang, Yanlin Song

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Controlling the behaviours of printed droplets is an essential requirement for inkjet printing of delicate three-dimensional (3D) structures or high-resolution patterns. In this work, molecular deposition and crystallization are regulated by manipulating the three-phase contact line (TCL) behaviour of the printed droplets. The results show that oriented single-crystal arrays are fabricated based on the continuously sliding TCL. Owing to the sliding of the TCL on the substrate, the outward capillary flow within the evaporating droplet is suppressed and the molecules are brought to the centre of the droplet, resulting in the formation of a single crystal. This work provides a facile strategy for controlling the structures of printed units by manipulating the TCL of printed droplets, which is significant for realizing high-resolution patterns and delicate 3D structures.

Original languageEnglish
Article number184002
Number of pages6
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • inkjet printing
  • oriented single-crystal arrays
  • sliding TCL
  • surface wettability

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