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Thin Water Acts Like a Solid 138

Roland Piquepaille writes "What happens when you compress water in a nano-sized space? According to Georgia Tech physicists, water starts to behave like a solid. "The confined water film behaves like a solid in the vertical direction by forming layers parallel to the confining surface, while maintaining it's liquidity in the horizontal direction where it can flow out," said one of the researchers. "Water is a wonderful lubricant, but it flows too easily for many applications. At the one nanometer scale, water is a viscous fluid and could be a much better lubricant," added another one."
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Thin Water Acts Like a Solid

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  • by kebes ( 861706 ) on Wednesday April 25, 2007 @04:42PM (#18875663) Journal
    There's actually alot of evidence in the literature suggesting that water forms a "structured layer" on hydrophillic (water-compatible) surfaces, and around hydrophillic objects dispersed in water. For instance the mobility of water that structures around proteins has been described in the literature as "ice-like." These measurements are typically based on the density of the water or using things like conductivity to infer mobility.

    So the notion of water forming solid-like structures near surfaces is not entirely new. However, direct mechanical measurements of the mobility/viscosity of those last few atomic layers of water are not easy, so this paper certainly adds a valuable contribution to the field.

    The actual scientific paper in question can be found here: http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.75.115415 [doi.org]
  • by wwillia99 ( 984401 ) on Wednesday April 25, 2007 @06:58PM (#18877785)
    Now we know why the internet is a series of tubes. Thats how they pump the water.

All laws are simulations of reality. -- John C. Lilly