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Non-specular reflection of walking droplets

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 September 2016

Giuseppe Pucci
Affiliation:
Department of Mathematics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA The Hatter Department of Marine Technologies, University of Haifa, Haifa, 3498838, Israel
Pedro J. Sáenz
Affiliation:
Department of Mathematics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
Luiz M. Faria
Affiliation:
Department of Mathematics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
John W. M. Bush
Affiliation:
Department of Mathematics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Since their discovery by Yves Couder and Emmanuel Fort, droplets walking on a vibrating liquid bath have attracted considerable attention because they unexpectedly exhibit certain features reminiscent of quantum particles. While the behaviour of walking droplets in unbounded geometries has to a large extent been rationalized theoretically, no such rationale exists for their behaviour in the presence of boundaries, as arises in a number of key quantum analogue systems. We here present the results of a combined experimental and theoretical study of the interaction of walking droplets with a submerged planar barrier. Droplets exhibit non-specular reflection, with a small range of reflection angles that is only weakly dependent on the system parameters, including the angle of incidence. The observed behaviour is captured by simulations based on a theoretical model that treats the boundaries as regions of reduced wave speed, and rationalized in terms of momentum considerations.

Type
Rapids
Copyright
© 2016 Cambridge University Press 

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