Rubber bands as model polymers in Couette flow
Dave E Dunstan
EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICS | IOP PUBLISHING LTD | Published : 2008
We present a simple device for demonstrating the essential aspects of polymers in flow in the classroom. Rubber bands are used as a macroscopic model of polymers to allow direct visual observation of the flow-induced changes in orientation and conformation. A transparent Perspex Couette cell, constructed from two sections of a tube, is used to create the simple flow developed by the relative motion of the two cylinders. This simple, qualitative visual demonstration of the flow behaviour of rubber bands in a transparent Perspex Couette flow cell shows flow alignment at low concentrations in glycerol in accord with expectation. At higher concentrations, an intriguing flow-induced 'balling' of ..View full abstract
Awarded by Australian Research Council
The author would like to thank Kevin Smeaton and Leah Crawford for construction of the Couette cell. Funding through the Australian Research Council DP 0343786 is also acknowledged.