Ever see someone walk on “water”?


Non-newtonian fluid is some pretty amazing stuff.  When you move through it slowly, it’s just like any other slightly thickened solution, BUT it has a viscosity that is dependent on its sheer rate or  tensile stress rate, and it turns into a near solid when a sudden pressure is exerted on it, but then it returns back to its liquid state when little or no pressure is exerted on it. This gives the you illusion of you being able to walk on water, if you can really call that an illusion. The recipe is simple; all you need is cornstarch and water, or if you can really call such a solution “water”. These guys and girls decided to fill up a small pool with it, and as you can imagine, hilarity ensued and fun was had by all!  They ended up using approximately 8,000 liters (which is about 2,113 gallons for the Americans out there!) of the mixture, with some food coloring added so they could have some real fun dancing, running, biking across, and sinking in the strange goop! Luckily for us (and you!), they filmed it all, and here it is:

When you watch this video, notice that if you move quickly and without the slightest hesitation, it acts like a viscous, almost solid surface that can easily support their weight. BUT, if they even begin to hesitate JUST ONCE SECOND and stop running, they will be getting dragged out of a big pool full of goop!  Technically, this goop would be called Oobleck, which is made of either corn starch, as in this case, of uncooked cornflour which has very similar properties (but perhaps cornflour and corn start taste a little differently from each other?)  Oobleck is used frequently because it is cheap, easy to make, and is often used in many other experiments to demonstrate the cool properties of non-Newtonian fluids! We just like the name and watching the video; what about you?

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