Researchers routinely use 2D experiments and simulations to represent 3D liquids, simply because studies in 2D are easier to do.
With these studies, physicists aim at rationalising familiar macroscopic fluid properties, such as the viscosity, in terms of the microscopic motion of the particles, which in 2D can be directly visualised.
Team - Associate - Professor - Massimo - Pica
The team led by Associate Professor Massimo Pica Ciamarra at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) set out to understand the 'thermal motion' of atoms in 2D and 3D liquids.
Using a mix of pen-and-paper calculations and numerical simulations, they predicted that atoms in 2D liquids can travel for long distances before effectively 'forgetting' their initial positions. This behaviour gives rise to a subtle collective motion of the atoms, of a sort that had previously only been thought to occur in solids.
Findings - Researchers - Experiments - Motions - Particles
To confirm their theoretical findings, the researchers performed experiments that tracked the motions of colloidal particles under a microscope. In ordinary three-dimensional liquids, such particles execute a type of random motion known as Brownian motion.
But in two-dimensional liquids, the team was able to demonstrate that the Brownian motion is overlaid on large-scale collective motions. This collective motion was previously believed to only occur...
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