JUL 26, 2016 10:07 AM PDT

How a Vortex Works


A vortex is a physics phenomenon that occurs when a gas or a liquid moves in circles. At the center is a vortex line that the matter swirls around. They are formed when there is a difference in the velocity of what surrounds the line. Hurricanes, tornadoes and air moving over a plane wing are examples of vortices. In this video a plate is moved through the still water of a pool creating twin vortices that stay together as they move across the pool. How do they do that?

The trick is that the plate is round. As opposed to a canoe paddle or cold and warm air crossing and creating a tornado, the rounded bottom of the plate creates a semi circular vortex line instead of a straight line. It's this curved line that connects the two vortices (formed on either side of the plate) and keeps them moving together. The half ring vortex line is a unique event in physics and adding the food coloring shows that it's capable of moving matter.
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
FEB 19, 2021
Plants & Animals
Group of Migrating Gray Whales Makes a Puget Sound Pitstop
FEB 19, 2021
Group of Migrating Gray Whales Makes a Puget Sound Pitstop
Washington’s Puget Sound is famously home to resident and transient orca pods. However, during their yearly migrat ...
MAR 26, 2021
Earth & The Environment
Iconic Bald Eagles are Thriving
MAR 26, 2021
Iconic Bald Eagles are Thriving
Once dangerously on the brink of extinction, bald eagle populations are thriving throughout the lower 48 states of the U ...
MAY 02, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Average Day on Venus Lasts 243 Earth Days
MAY 02, 2021
Average Day on Venus Lasts 243 Earth Days
Although Venus is our planet’s closest neighbour, its fundamental properties have remained largely unknown. Now th ...
JUL 03, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Size of Planet Iron Core Depends on Star Magnetism
JUL 03, 2021
Size of Planet Iron Core Depends on Star Magnetism
Researchers led by the University of Maryland have found that the sun's magnetic field is the reason behind the larg ...
JUL 08, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Giant Plumes on Saturn's Moon May Hold Signs of Life
JUL 08, 2021
Giant Plumes on Saturn's Moon May Hold Signs of Life
Saturn’s moon, Enceladus, has giant erupting plumes of water that, scientists say, can not be explained by known g ...
JUL 15, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Modern Slavery in Greece Spotted from Space
JUL 15, 2021
Modern Slavery in Greece Spotted from Space
Migrant settlements being exploited for work have been spotted with satellite imagery by researchers led by the Universi ...
Loading Comments...