(ORDO NEWS) — During the modern history of science, scientists have wondered for decades how soft water droplets can break down hard materials.
The physics of this process has been little studied due to the imperfection of measurement and observation of technical means. For the first time, a team of American scientists was able to describe how “water wears away stone.”
Relatively recently, scientists have developed a method of high-speed stress microscopy. Thanks to him, American physicists were able to determine the pressure, force, and stress that occur when water drops fall on solid surfaces.
In the study, the scientists compared liquid droplets to miniature bombs that release large amounts of energy when they fall.
Drops do the same. When falling, the force of impact from a drop extends over the entire area of fall, and not pointwise, as previously thought.
As a result, drops multiplied by time and quantity release a large amount of energy that can lead to the destruction and erosion of solid materials.
According to the head of the study, their discovery will help to better understand the nature of the drops, and will also be useful to engineers developing materials, equipment and other industrial elements.
Understanding the process of water erosion will allow the creation of more advanced and sustainable materials, scientists say.
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