– How does a soap bubble actually develop?
Everybody knows them as adorable toys – soap bubbles. They are very colorful and fragile. But why exactly?
What do we know about bubbles?
What makes bubbles the shape we know them to be? A closer look reveals a whole series of exciting questions:
But soap bubbles have long been the subject of tricky thought work under scientific aspects. For mathematicians and physicists, for example, they express a fundamental principle of the physical world: minimalism.
Soap bubbles surround the largest possible volume with the smallest possible surface area. If they float unhindered in the air, they inevitably take on a spherical shape.
As a thin soap skin, foam or multi-bubbled, stretched between wire frames or plates, different geometric forms and mixed forms emerge.
Even these, however, always follow the universal principle of minimalism: With a given frame and enclosed volume, the sum of all surfaces is always as small as possible, a so-called minimal surface.
Scientists learn from soap bubbles
Scientists in bionics (derived from the terms biology and technology) are benefiting from what nature has developed over millions of years as the optimal solution.
Bionics is an interdisciplinary science that combines findings from biology, engineering, architecture and mathematics.
Its aim is to transfer natural phenomena into the field of technology in order to use them for human beings.
Following the example and ideal laws of soap bubbles, bionics researchers today develop roof constructions and plan road systems, flight connections and cable networks.