Shock Wave Formation in the Collapse of a Vapor Nanobubble

F. Magaletti, L. Marino, C. M. Casciola

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    In this Letter, the dynamics of a collapsing vapor bubble is addressed by means of a diffuse-interface formulation. The model cleanly captures, through a unified approach, all the critical features of the process, such as phase change, transition to supercritical conditions, thermal conduction, compressibility effects, and shock wave formation and propagation. Rather unexpectedly for pure vapor bubbles, the numerical experiments show that the process consists in the oscillation of the bubble associated with the emission of shock waves in the liquid, and with the periodic disappearance and reappearance of the liquid-vapor interface due to transition to super- or subcritical conditions. The results identify the mechanism of shock wave formation as strongly related to the transition of the vapor to the supercritical state, with a progressive steepening of a focused compression wave evolving into a shock which is eventually reflected as an outward propagating wave in the liquid.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number064501
    JournalPhysical Review Letters
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 12 Feb 2015


    Dive into the research topics of 'Shock Wave Formation in the Collapse of a Vapor Nanobubble'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this