The Leidenfrost Maze

(YouTube link)

The Leidenfrost effect is when a liquid (in this case, water) comes in contact with a surface so hot (above the liquid's boiling point) that instead of evaporating in hurry, the water droplet becomes surrounded by a layer of water vapor, which slows down the evaporation. This is how cooks use water droplets to see how hot a griddle is. In essence, the water droplet is hovering over the hot surface. This hovering droplet can be manipulated: for instance, when the hot surface is textured in a certain way, the drop will skitter in a predetermined direction. Even uphill!

Carmen Cheng and Matthew Guy used that principle to build a maze in which water droplets were directed along a winding path by the Leidenfrost effect. They use this maze to demonstrate the science, but it looks darn cool, too! -via Arbroath


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When I was a little kid my Nana taught me how to cook. That water drop test on a hot griddle (she brought it from Scotland) was the first thing she showed me how to do. She said when the water drop formed into a ball and danced on the pan then that was when the scones were ready to be griddled. I still have her old griddle. I'd rather have her...
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Check out Twaggies' very funny clip:

Tech Fails - Twaggies by Twaggies
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