Volume 86, Number 2, April 2009
Article Number 24003
Number of page(s) 5
Section Electromagnetism, Optics, Acoustics, Heat Transfer, Classical Mechanics, and Fluid Dynamics
Published online 04 May 2009
EPL, 86 (2009) 24003
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/86/24003

Dynamics of charged hemispherical soap bubbles

J. E. Hilton and A. van der Net

Foams and Complex Systems Group, Department of Physics, Trinity College - Dublin 2, Ireland, EU

received 11 November 2008; accepted in final form 22 March 2009; published April 2009
published online 4 May 2009

Raising the potential of a charged hemispherical soap bubble over a critical limit causes deformation of the bubble into a cone and ejection of a charged liquid jet. This is followed by a mode which has not previously been observed in bubbles, in which a long cylindrical liquid film column is created and collapses due to a Rayleigh-Plateau instability creating child bubbles. We show that the formation of the column and subsequent creation of child bubbles is due to a drop in potential caused by the ejection of charge from the system via the jet. Similar dynamics may occur in microscopic charged liquid droplets (electrospray processes), causing the creation of daughter droplets and long liquid spindles.

47.55.db - Drop and bubble formation.
47.20.Dr - Surface-tension-driven instability.

© EPLA 2009