Altering soil wettability by inclusion of hydrophobicity could be an effective way to restrict evaporation from soil, thereby conserving water resources. In this study, 4-μL sessile water droplets were evaporated from an artificial soil millipore comprised of three glass (i.e. hydrophilic) and Teflon (i.e. hydrophobic) 2.38-mm-diameter beads. The distance between the beads were kept constant (i.e. center-to-center spacing of 3.1 mm). Experiments were conducted in an environmental chamber at an air temperature of 20°C and 30% and 75% relative humidity (RH). Evaporation rates were faster (i.e. ∼19 minutes and ∼49 minutes at 30% and 75% RH) from hydrophilic pores than the Teflon one (i.e. ∼24 minutes and ∼52 minutes at 30% and 75% RH) due in part to greater air-water contact area. Rupture of liquid droplets during evaporation was analyzed and predictions were made on rupture based on contact line pinning and depinning, projected surface area just before rupture, and pressure difference across liquid-vapor interface. It was observed that, in hydrophilic pore, the liquid droplet was pinned on one bead and the contact line on the other beads continuously decreased by deforming the liquid-vapor interface, though all three gas-liquid-solid contact lines decreased at a marginal rate in hydrophobic pore. For hydrophilic and hydrophobic pores, approximately 1.7 mm2 and 1.8–2 mm2 projected area of the droplet was predicted at 30% and 75% RH just before rupture occurs. Associated pressure difference responsible for rupture was estimated based on the deformation of curvature of liquid-vapor interface.

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