Drops in space: super oscillations and surfactant studies

Robert E. Apfel, Yuren Tian, Joseph Jankovsky, Tao Shi, X. Chen, R. Glynn Holt, Eugene Trinh, Arvid Croonquist, Kathyrn C. Thornton, Albert Sacco, Catherine Coleman, Fred W. Leslie, David H. Matthiesen

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


An unprecedented microgravity observation of maximal shape oscillation of a surfactant-hearing water drop was observed in space during a mission of Space Shuttle Columbia. This paper presents a liquid drop experiments conducted in microgravity using the acoustic positioning/manipulation environment of the Drop Physics Module (DPM). The objective of the experiment was to study the rheological properties of liquid drop surfaces and to infer surface properties such as surface tension, Gibb's elasticity, and surface dilatational viscosity by using a theory which relies on spherical symmetry to solve the momentum and mass transport equations. The techniques involve the acoustic squeezing and releasing of the liquid drop, and measurement of the subsequent free decay frequency and damping constant. Results of the experiment are presented in detail.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)585-590
Number of pages6
JournalNASA Conference Publication
Issue number3338
StatePublished - 1996
EventProceedings of the 1996 3rd Microgravity Fluid Physics Conference - Cleveland, OH, USA
Duration: Jul 13 1996Jul 15 1996


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