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[Phys-l] Coalesing drops

Becoming pop. is photographing splashing and drop collisions -- my thinking such is a development of an interactive exhibit at the Exploratorium.

Index of /images/Drops at the Exploratorium

And a device for such is marketed by Bryan Mumford.

Water Drops

This leads to my question posed to a friend and his answer:

You will have no time in 3 or 4 feet for a small drop to "catch up" to a larger drop. The collisions are caused only by a later drop colliding with the spout of an earlier drop.


I've noticed no drop collisions w/o reflection. If one has two successive closely spaced drops, one may cause them to collide if the first is larger. The smaller will catch up and likely coalesce instead of shatter.

I'm abut to, assuming (bad) Stoke is applicable, what reasonable differing sized drops would succeed. I pose the question as interesting, I pray.

bc thinks a quadratic dissipation would be more accurate, and would more likely give a favourable result.