Bubbles in water have been caught doing backflips for the first time

After colliding with a tilted wall, air bubbles in water execute a backflip and hit the wall for a second time because they get caught in their own wake. These acrobatics could be harnessed for cleaning

Physics 15 September 2022

Bubbles exhibit backflipping behavior when colliding tilted surfaces with low inclination angles

Bubbles exhibit backflipping behaviour when colliding tilted surfaces

Alireza (Navid) Hooshanginejad

When air bubble in water collide with a tilted surface, some bounce away and then reverse course, hitting the surface again in a “backflipping” motion. These acrobatics are caused by the flow of fluid around a bubble and could potentially be harnessed for cleaning.

Alireza Hooshanginejad at Brown University in Rhode Island and his colleagues shot differently sized air bubbles in a tank of water towards a glass slide. The slide was held flat against the top of the water or tilted …

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