Physics has revealed the secret of the formation of layers in a latte

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Physics has revealed the secret of why the latte has an unusual layered structure, and find out how you can create the same pattern in almost any liquid and even in the jelly-like materials, said in an article published in the journal Nature Communications.

«Various natural patterns are one of the most interesting and beautiful phenomena, the study of which we can do. Self-organizing systems such as waves on the water surface, fluctuations of the flame, symmetric, and complex snowflakes have long attracted people’s attention. Something similar happens if you pour espresso into a Cup of warm milk and turn it into a puff latte,» write Howard stone (Howard Stone) from Princeton University (USA) and his colleagues.

Many objects in the world, including snowflakes, clouds, the «witch’s circles» in the forests and on the savannahs of Africa, and how curled mustache cucumbers, formed convolutions on the surface of the brain and the gut, fit into the hinges look complicated, but they can be described with fairly simple mathematical formulas. Their «author» or are the forces of nature, or evolution, seeking perfect solutions to some complex problems for many millions of years.

Physicists, mathematicians and chemists are actively studying such «experiments of nature» in order to understand how they work, and use this information to solve some complex engineering or scientific problems.

Stone and his colleagues were interested in another similar problem, which already is a person, not a force of nature – a mystery, as the layers are formed with different coloring in a glass of latte.

In the most simplified form, as emphasized by physicists, scientists long enough to understand how to «work» latte. It arises from the fact that coffee and milk have different densities and heated to different temperatures, and their interaction makes most of the coffee float, and milk to accumulate in the bottom of the glass.

On the other hand, scientists could not understand why a chaotic mixture of two liquids, albeit with different properties, is gradually transformed into an ordered set of bright and dark strips with approximately the same concentrations of coffee and milk.

These layers, as the researchers note, are unusually stable, they persist for several days, and it can regenerate even in those cases, if the ready «latte» slightly stir. Interestingly, similar properties, as the researchers note, show some of the Arctic lakes and other bodies of water, consisting of many layers of fresh and salt water.

Armed with these mathematical ideas, scientists have «painted» transparent jelly, entering hot gel filled with green paint. Likewise, scientists assume that it is possible to produce other, more complex layered structure, including analogs of various tissues of the human body, complex chemicals and various industrial materials.