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Flowing Water Appears Frozen Because Of Unbelievable Physics Quirk

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Flowing Water Appears Frozen Because Of Unbelievable Physics Quirk

A quirk in the physics of moving liquid is the unexpected science behind an eye-opening video showing flowing water that appears to be frozen. Take a look below:

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In the mind-boggling video, a perfect, seemingly frozen, stream of water is shown exiting a pipe as Italian film-maker Dario Bonzi moves his hands through it without 'breaking' the ice.

Well, believe it or not, this isn't the works of CGI as the strange phenomenon is actually a result of a physical law affecting both gases and liquids known as 'laminar flow.'

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According to Britannica, laminar flow describes particles moving along 'regular' paths.

This is the opposite of 'turbulent flow' where particles move along 'irregular' paths and the fluid fluctuates in an irregular pattern.

Credit: Dario Bonzi
Credit: Dario Bonzi

Turbulent flow is the typical pattern we are used to seeing when water flows from a pipe or tap.

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Another example of where you might find laminar flow is when a cigarette is held in a room without wind or a breeze.

The smoke coming out of the burning end of the cigarette will often appear to move upwards without moving at all.

The smoke then enters a turbulent flow a few centimetres above the cigarette.

One of the most jarring aspects of Dario's video is the sound of splashing as the water hits the ground.

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It almost appears to show a real-world glitch in which the rules of physics no longer apply... Perhaps we do live in a computer simulation after all!

Credit: Caters Clips
Credit: Caters Clips

Of course, it didn't take long for the video to capture attention online, with one YouTuber saying: "I saw somewhere that is laminar flow but I still don't understand how it works."

We do now, but it's still beyond belief.

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Another user added a more relatable comment: "Wth did I just watch."

If you're still feeling a bit confused, Twitter account Science Club posted a video giving step-by-step instructions on how to recreate laminar flow at home with nothing but a balloon and some tape.

Credit: Twitter/@scienceClub01
Credit: Twitter/@scienceClub01

The first step is to fill the balloon with water - this can be done in a sink to avoid making a mess.

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The second step is to make a small empty square using masking tape on the balloon's surface.

The third and final step is to pop a small hole in the centre of the square to allow the water to escape the balloon - the person shooting the video appears to have made this hole using a sharp pen or pencil.

The water should start spurting out as if it were a frozen stream once you've completed all three steps.

The experiment reproduces the conditions needed to create laminar flow including a small hole and slow-moving liquid.

Words by: Charlie Metcalf

Featured Image Credit: Caters Clips

Topics: Science, Interesting, Weird

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