The classical wetting process corresponds to liquid droplets or layers that
appear in the interface between a vapor phase and a solid substrate.
Complete wetting is characterized by vanishing contact angle
and thick layers of liquid. In fact, the layer thickness diverges
as one approaches the coexistence curve between the liquid and the vapor phase.
The nature of this divergence reflects the short- or long-ranged character of
the underlying molecular forces
This complete wetting process represents an interfacial phase transition
with a diverging correlation length
and a vanishing contact probability
for the two interfaces bounding the wetting layers
The critical behavior at complete wetting can be understood in the framework
of effective interface models
Depending on the direct molecular interactions between
the two interfaces, these transitions
exhibit two different scaling regimes:
In the fluctuation regime, the transitions are controlled
by the fluctuation-induced interactions arising from the
hard wall constraint;
in the other regime, the transitions are governed by the
The same distinction applies to systems with
and quasi-periodic order
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