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Phys Rev Lett. 2009 Dec 31;103(26):264503. Epub 2009 Dec 29.

Optical control of thermocapillary effects in complex nanofluids.

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  • 1Physics Department, Technion, Haifa 32000, Israel.


We study the strong coupling of light and nanoparticle suspensions and their surface tension effect in capillaries. We show experimentally and theoretically that increasing the intensity of a narrow laser beam passing through a capillary far away from the surface results in a significant decrease in the fluid level. The underlying mechanism relies on light-induced redistribution of nanoparticles in the bulk and the surface of the fluid, facilitating continuous optical control over the surface position. The experiments manifest optical control from afar over properties of fluid surfaces.

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