Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Wet-Dog Physics

Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Wet-Dog Physics

Article excerpt

If you have ever bathed a dog, you know firsthand how quickly a drenched pup can shake water off. Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology are studying the physics of the wet-dog shake to improve the efficiency of washing machines, dryers, painting devices, spin coaters, and other machines.

David Hu, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, and mechanical

engineering graduate student Andrew Dickerson, who led the project, recently captured 40 different animals--13 species in total--using high-speed videography and x-ray cinematography to better see how a mammal shakes itself dry.

The new research was presented at the 63rd annual meeting of the American Physical Society's Division of Fluid Dynamics. "We hope the findings from our research will contribute to technology that can harness these efficient and quick capabilities of drying seen in nature," Dickerson says.

The researchers found that animals oscillate at frequencies sufficient to lose water droplets and that shaking frequency is a function of animal size. The larger the animal, the more slowly it shakes dry, Hu and Dickerson say. …

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