NASA scientists have used a floating ball of water and a GoPro camera to — in the most awesome of ways — show how surface tension works in a microgravity environment. The results has the astronauts — Reid Wiseman, Steve Swanson and Alexander Gerst — laughing and us totally in awe.
The video was shot in the summer of 2014, during Expedition 40, but it was just released to the public on Monday. The video has already accumulated more than 700,000 views.
According the website iflscience.com, “In space, liquids naturally take on a spherical shape because they’re in free fall. Therefore, gravity doesn’t affect them like on Earth and rather it’s surface tension that shapes them. Hydrogen bonding between water molecules naturally pulls them together, resulting in a spherical configuration that minimizes surface area.”
You’ll notice in the video that one of the astronauts uses surface tension to “stretch” the water over his hands and deform the globular mass of water.
Pretty cool stuff!
Meteorologist Alan Raymond