How To Measure Surface Tension

Surface tension is a scientific term that describes the ability of the surface of a liquid to stick or to be attached to another liquid or to another surface. This can be called surface physics. We may not be aware, but surface tension can be seen in our everyday lives. Some examples of surface tension are objects that float on water, oil and water separation, beads of water on different surfaces and more. People sometimes refer to this as the glass surface. Water tension is a property that can be measured. There are several ways how to measure surface tension.

Here are a few techniques used in measuring surface tension:

  1. Pendant drop. One method to measure surface tension is the pendant drop. For this method, the surface tension is calculated based on the shape of a droplet of water. A needle is used. The liquid is then injected into the needle until a drop forms at the tip. A tensionmeter can also be used with this method. If a tensionmeter is going to be used, it must be accompanied by a special computer and software.
  2. DuNouy-Padday. For this method, a rod is used for measuring the surface tension. This thin rod is dipped into the liquid. The meniscus is then measured. According to studies, this method produces the most accurate results when measuring the surface tension.
  3. Wilhelmy plate. For the Wilhelmy plate method, a thin plate is used. This plate is carefully placed downward on the surface of the liquid. The downward force of the plate is then measured. To get the surface tension, the force of the plate is divided by the measurement of the perimeter of the plate that was dipped on the liquid. For this procedure, it must be made sure that the plate is completely resting on the surface before the force or contact angle measurement is measured. This is to ensure the contact angle is zero.
  4. Spinning drop. This method is used when the amount of surface tension is very low. A thin tube is used for this. A liquid is placed inside the thin tube, which contains another liquid. The thin tube is then spun at high speeds. The surface tension is then calculated based on the speed of rotation and the shape of the liquid when it drops off the tube.
  5. Jaeger’s method. This is also known as the bubble pressure method. For this, a tube is put into the liquid. As the air flows through the tube, bubbles are formed in the liquid. The pressure of each bubble that escapes the tube is then measured to determine the surface tension.

These are the different methods on how you can measure the surface tension. To do these methods, you must make use of special instruments that are made solely for the purpose of measuring surface tension. One manufacturer of such instruments is Kibron Inc. Kibron is a company that specializes in the creation of different types of equipment used in chemistry and other sciences. You can visit the company’s official website at to see their selection of apparatus.


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