Volume 80, Number 3, November 2007
|Number of page(s)||5|
|Section||Electromagnetism, Optics, Acoustics, Heat Transfer, Classical Mechanics, and Fluid Dynamics|
|Published online||17 October 2007|
Shape and instability of free-falling liquid globules
Physique et Mécanique des Milieux Hétérogènes, UMR 7636 du CNRS, ESPCI - 75005 Paris, France
2 LKB, ENS - 24 rue Lhomond, 75005 Paris, France
Accepted: 11 September 2007
The velocity of a falling raindrop depends on its size, and thus so does its shape. Here we describe the different simple shapes which model drops falling in air. While millimetric drops remain spherical, owing to the action of surface tension, drops larger than the capillary length get flattened, as sessile drops on solids. Air penetrates still larger globules, which are observed to be unstable. They inflate till they burst, generating myriads of fragments.
PACS: 47.20.Ma – Interfacial instabilities (e.g., Rayleigh-Taylor)
© Europhysics Letters Association, 2007
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