Fluid polygons and polyhedra

We’ll call it Math Wednesday. Marc de Vinck turned me on to these amazing fluid-based polygons and polyhedra:

When a vertical water jet strikes a circular horizontal impactor, the water is deflected into a horizontal sheet. At sufficiently high speeds, the flow results in a circular water sheet, whose radius is set by a balance between inertial and curvature forces. At lower speeds, the sheet sags significantly under the influence of gravity, and may close, giving rise to a water bell. We have conducted a series of experiments in order to investigate the influence of increasing fluid viscosity on fluid sheets and bells.

[Thanks, Marc!]

Fluid polygons and polyhedra

Math Mondays on MAKE

2 thoughts on “Fluid polygons and polyhedra

  1. Well, I’m disappointed, I was fairly convinced that the ginormous hexagon Cassini found in 2007 was made of ceramic and was proof that Saturn was an artifact, I even postulated that the ring system was a Dyson-scale scaffolding intended for energy collection (or propulsion) being built by giant robotic drones that we are mistaking for moons. Enceladus being the primary source for the organo-metallic compounds being plated and ordered into ring shape, kind of like the nozzle of an orbiting 3D printer. But NOOOOOO, it’s probably just some dumb accident of fluid mechanics.


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Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy man’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.

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