Research

Bubbles and Films Merging

As we’ve seen before, a water droplet can merge gradually with a pool through a coalescence cascade. It turns out that the coalescence of a soap bubble with a soap film can follow a similar process! Initially, the bubble and film are separated by a thin layer of air. Once that air drains away and the bubble contacts the fluid, it starts to coalesce. But the bubble pinches off before its entire volume merges, leaving behind a daughter bubble with about half the radius of the previous bubble. This process repeats until the bubble is small enough that it merges completely. To see more great high-speed footage of this bubble merger, check out the full video below.  (Image/video credit: D. Harris et al.)

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