MadSci Network: Physics

Re: Why do carbon particles shoot out from a lighted wick?

Date: Thu Apr 29 01:43:27 2004
Posted By: John Pojman, Faculty, Chemistry, University of Southern Mississippi
Area of science: Physics
ID: 1081112631.Ph

You are observing surface-tension induced convection.  The particles slowly rise from buoyancy-
induced flows.  When they reach the surface, the gradient of surface tension, i.e., the surface 
tension decreases with increasing temperature, causes a rapid fluid flow.

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