On the Molecular Level Cavitation in Soft Gelatin Hydrogel

KAH Al Mahmud and F Hasan and MI Khan and A Adnan, SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, 10 (2020).

DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-66591-9

We have studied the molecular level cavitation mechanisms and bubble growth kinetics in soft gelatin hydrogel and water. The apparent difference in cavitation threshold pressure between that generates in pure water and that in gelatin hydrogel is considered. Gelatin, which is derived from collagen, is frequently used as a brain simulant material. In liquid, cavitation bubble is created when surrounding pressure drops below the saturation vapor pressure. In principle, a cavitation bubble should continue to grow as long as tensile pressure continues to increase in the system. In our study, using molecular dynamics simulation, we have investigated the pressure requirement for a nanoscale cavitation to grow in water and gel. First, we have modeled a gel like structure with a preexisting bubble of 5nm radius. A control model containing a 5nm bubble in pure water is also created. Then, we have applied hydrostatic tensile pressure at two different expansion rates in the gel and water models. The results show that a gel-like structure requires higher pressure for the cavitation to grow, and both gel and water models exhibit strain rate effect on the cavitation threshold pressure. We have also found that the cavitation collapse time is dominated by the viscosity of the medium.

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