The Leidenfrost Effect

This week Reactions is all about the chemistry and science of the Leidenfrost Effect. Have you ever seen a drop of water navigate a maze? It’s possible thanks to a weird phenomenon called the Leidenfrost Effect. Understanding Leidenfrost — first described more than 200 years ago — helped engineers make more efficient steam engines. Today, scientists are using high-speed cameras to work out how super hot water behaves on metal surfaces. These little levitating water droplets are a big deal — this could also help prevent future nuclear disasters.

Find us on all these places:

Sam Lemonick

Narrator/Scientific Consultant:
Darcy Gentleman, Ph.D.

Scientific Consultant:
Neelesh Patankar, Ph.D.

Scientific Consultant:
Kei Takashina, Ph.D.

Fact Checker:
Kyle Nackers

Executive Producer:
Adam Dylewski

Video Producer:
Sean Parsons

Special Thanks To:
University of Bath

“Boo_Boogie” By Dougie Wood
“Sunday_Plans” By Silent Partner


Thermal conductivity of liquid water

Thermal conductivity of steam

Ever wonder why dogs sniff each others’ butts? Or how Adderall works? Or whether it’s OK to pee in the pool? We’ve got you covered: Reactions a web series about the chemistry that surrounds you every day.

Reactions is produced by the American Chemical Society.

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