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When exposed to a high-voltage electric field, water in two beakers
climbs out of the beakers and crosses empty space to meet, forming the
water bridge. The liquid bridge, hovering in space, appears to the
human eye to defy gravity.
Upon investigating the phenomenon, the scientists found that water
was being transported from one beaker to another, usually from the
anode beaker to the cathode beaker. The cylindrical water bridge, with
a diameter of 1-3 mm, could remain intact when the beakers were pulled
apart at a distance of up to 25 mm.
Why water would act this way was a surprise, Fuchs told PhysOrg.com.
But the group’s analyses have shown that the explanation may lie within
the nature of the water’s structure. Initially, the bridge forms due to
electrostatic charges on the surface of the water. The electric field
then concentrates inside the water, arranging the water molecules to
form a highly ordered microstructure. This microstructure remains
stable, keeping the bridge intact.