Dispersion of particles dropped on a liquid

17 July 2013
Benoit Darrasse
<p>The good use of condiments is one of the secrets of a tasty quiche. If you want to delight your guests, add a pinch of ground pepper or cinnamon to the yellow liquid formed by the mix of the eggs and the crème fraiche. Here, is a surprise : even if the liquid is at rest, the pinch of milled pepper spreads by itself at the surface of the mixture. It expands in a circular way, and within a few seconds, it covers an area equal to several times its initial one. Why does it spread like that ? What factors influence this dispersion ? I will present some experiments and mathematical models of this process.</p>
  • OCCAM Wednesday Morning Event