Stabilization of liquid instabilities with ionized gas jets

Journal: Nature

Published: 2021-03-31

DOI: 10.1038/s41586-021-03359-9

Affiliations: 6

Authors: 7

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Research Highlight

Ionized jets create less of a splash

© Jason marz/Moment/Getty Images

© Jason marz/Moment/Getty Images

A jet of weakly ionized gas molecules produces a more stable deformation on a liquid surface than a neutral gas jet.

Blowing through a straw creates a small dimple on the surface of a drink. This simple phenomenon is important in a wide range of natural and industrial processes, including in biomedical engineering and steel making. However, the factors that influence the stability of these cavities on a liquid surface have received little attention.

Now, seven researchers, including five from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), have discovered that cavities on a water surface produced by jets of weakly ionized helium gas are more stable than those created by a neutral helium jet.

This is the first time that an ionized gas jet has been shown to have a stabilizing effect and it could shed light on the dynamics of weakly ionized atmospheres of planets as well as important industrial processes.

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  1. Nature 592, 49–53 (2021). doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-03359-9
Institutions Share
Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), South Korea 0.71
Jeonbuk National University (JBNU), South Korea 0.14
Jozef Stefan Institute (IJS), Slovenia 0.14