Surface tension plays a dominant role in the formation and stability of soap films. It renders them both a quasi-two-dimensional fluid and an elastic membrane at the same time. The techniques for measuring the surface tension of the soap solution may very well apply to the static soap film, but how can the surface tension of a soap film be unintrusively measured, and what value would it assume? The answer, being at the intersection of physical chemistry, non-equilibrium physics and interfacial fluid dynamics, is not amenable to deduction via established methods. In a joint theoretical and experimental study, Sane et al. (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 841, 2018, R2) exploit elasticity theory to glean the answer through a simple, yet elegant framework.
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