Because most methods for assessing the wettability of porous materials are restricted in their applicability, we developed two new methods for measuring contact angles and particle surface energy. The proposed methods (the Wilhelmy plate method (WPM) and the modified capillary rise method (MCRM)) were tested on 24 soils. For comparison, the water drop penetration time test (WDPTT) and the sessile drop method (SDM) were also applied. It was found that advancing contact angles, measured either with WPM or MCRM, agreed well in the range of 0° to 142°. Sessile drop contact angles were within the domain enclosed by the range of advancing and receding contact angles as determined with WPM. WDPTT, however, was only sensitive in the narrow range of 85° to 115°. We conclude that both WPM and MCRM are reliable methods for determining contact angles and particle surface energy over a wide range of porous material wettabilities.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/robert-horton/51/