The Sciences

NCBI ROFL: Walking with coffee: Why does it spill?

DiscoblogBy ncbi roflMay 17, 2012 11:00 PM

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"In our busy lives, almost all of us have to walk with a cup of coffee. While often we spill the drink, this familiar phenomenon has never been explored systematically. Here we report on the results of an experimental study of the conditions under which coffee spills for various walking speeds and initial liquid levels in the cup.These observations are analyzed from the dynamical systems and fluid mechanics viewpoints as well as with the help of a model developed here. Particularities of the common cup sizes, the coffee properties, and the biomechanics of walking proved to be responsible for the spilling phenomenon. The studied problem represents an example of the interplay between the complex motion of a cup, due to the biomechanics of a walking individual, and the low-viscosity-liquid dynamics in it." Bonus figure from the main text:

Thanks to @seblumer for today's ROFL! Related content: Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Sex differences in preferences for coffee sweetness among Japanese students.

Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Wish you could get drunk without blacking out? Next time, have a coffee.

Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: And you thought walking while chewing gum was hard.

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