- News Home
27 November 2013 12:59 pm ,
Vol. 342 ,
The new head of the National Center for Science Education promises to "fight the good fight" against attacks on...
Analyses of the H7N9 strains isolated from four new cases show that the virus is evolving rapidly, heightening anxiety...
In 2009, Jack Szostak shared a Nobel Prize for his part in discovering the role of telomeres, the end bits of...
Science has exposed a thriving academic black market in China involving shady agencies, corrupt scientists, and...
Paper-selling agencies flourish in the aura of reputable businesses. For some scientists, it may be difficult to tell...
Featuring the first lunar rover in 40 years, Chang'e-3 is seen as an important milestone on China's quest to send a...
Data collected by satellites and floating probes have chronicled a 2-decade rise in the temperature and thickness of a...
Cholesterol, the artery-clogging molecule that contributes to cardiovascular disease, has another nasty trick up its...
- 27 November 2013 12:59 pm , Vol. 342 , #6162
- About Us
Video: Splash-Cups Sow Seeds
11 December 2012 7:01 pm
When a raindrop hits the inside of a Chrysosplenium echinus flower, it gathers speed, collects a few seeds, and jets back out of the 10-cm-tall plant, landing as far as a meter away. All short-stemmed Chrysosplenium and Mazus plants use so-called splash-cups to disperse their seeds like this, taking advantage of the power of raindrops in areas that are prone to frequent showers, spritzes from waterfalls, or seasonal downpours. Now, scientists have analyzed the physics of splash-cups to figure out just how these flowers speed up and launch out drops of water. By building a model of the splash-cups and taking high-speed video of water hitting it (above), the researchers found that the steepness and curvature of the flowers' walls is what propels the water so fast and so far. And the primary determinant of how much the flower sped up any individual raindrop was how far from the center of the splash-cup the drop hit, the team reports online today in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface. An understanding of how to optimize the splashes could lead to better inkjet printers and blood splash pattern analysis techniques, and could help researchers develop ways to harvest energy from rain.
See more videos.