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Photo by Bob Price from Pexels

Self-cleaning surfaces and laboratories on a chip become even more efficient if we are able to control individual droplets.

University of Groningen professor Patrick Onck, together with colleagues from Eindhoven University of Technology, have shown that this is possible by using a technique called mechanowetting. “We have come up with a way of transporting droplets by using transverse surface waves. This even works on inclined or vertical surfaces.”

The idea of mechanowetting is basically very simple: put a droplet on a transverse surface wave, and the droplet will move with the wave. “One of the properties of water droplets is that they always try to stay on top of a wave. If that top runs ahead, the droplet will run with it,” Onck explains. It is possible to move the droplets by using mechanical deformation to create surface waves. “The remarkable thing about this is that it also works on inclined or vertical surfaces: drops can even move upwards against gravity.” (1)

Falling drop. Falling asteroid.

Water carrying water.

A sea carrying drops.

An ocean carrying humans.

The abyss holding into hopes.

But it’s not the world you are looking at. But its mirror image.

Turn around and look at yourself.


Hopes carrying the abyss.

Humans taming the ocean.

Small tiny drops…

Carrying the sea…