Sunday, November 8, 2009
A Deadly Viscoelastic Fluid
While searching around for rheology blogs, I found the blog Entertaining Research. In a 2007 post, Guru found a paper by Gaume and Fortiere that studied the viscoelastic properties of pitcher plants from Borneo. When the fluid in the plant was diluted, it was able to retain some of its insect-trapping properties. The authors attribute this to the elastic properties of the fluid and found a correlation between the fluid’s Deborah number and the effectiveness of the fluid’s ability to capture insects.