Surface Tension Essay

693 words - 3 pages

Surface Tension My problem was to find out how to test or measure surface tension. I think thereason of some of the force in surface tension is cohesion and gravity. Surface Tension isthe condition existing at the free surface of a liquid, resembling the properties of anelastic skin under tension. The tension is the result of intermolecular forces exerting anunbalanced inward pull on the individual surface molecules; this is reflected in theconsiderable curvature at those edges where the liquid is in contact with the wall of avessel. Because of this property, certain insects can stand on the surface of water. A razorblade can also be supported by the surface tension of water. The razor blade is notfloating: if pushed through the surface, it sinks through the water. More specifically, thetension is the force per unit length of any straight line on the liquid surface that thesurface layers on the opposite sides of the line exert upon each other. The tendency ofany liquid surface is to become as small as possible as a result of this tension, as in thecase of mercury, which forms an almost round ball when a small quantity is placed on ahorizontal surface. The near-perfect spherical shape of a soap bubble, which is the resultof the distribution of tension on the thin film of soap, is another example of this force;surface tension alone can support a needle placed horizontally on a water surface. Surface tension depends mainly upon the forces attraction between the particleswithin the given liquid and also upon the gas, solid, or liquid in contact with it.The molecules in a drop of water, for example, attract each other weakly. Watermolecules well inside the drop may be thought of as being attracted equally in alldirections by the surrounding molecules. However if surface molecules could bedisplaced slightly outward from the surface, they would be attracted back by the near...

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