Catching prey using Vortices

I was reading about Vortices and after hours of research online, out of the blue I stumbled upon this amazing bird. This is the Red Necked Phalarope and from the looks of it seems to have put vortices to a really productive use - catching its prey.

By rotating around ~60-80 times a minute, it produces an upward vortex that sucks out insects/bugs/crustaceans from the water, which it swiftly picks up with its beak and eats. ( This one would have aced the Fluids class for sure :D)

This is analogous to tornadoes sweeping up cars and houses along its way in an upward swirl.

Mind Blown!

** The actual dynamics of vortices of course is waay more complicated. ;)

*** There are three species of phalarope (red-necked, red/grey, and Wilson’s), and they can all feed like that.            


Ye Olde UFO Store in Sedona, Arizona not only sells souvenirs and memorabilia related to aliens and other conspiracies, it also hosts UFO-watching trips and tours of local vortices. Sedona itself is a major hotbed of paranormal activity; its reputation as a home to the Sedona Vortex, the alleged gateway to a parallel universe adjacent to our own. The exact nature of this other dimension is not entirely established; however, some have guessed it to be a gateway to the astral plane, or a place where alien spacecraft can enter from their world into ours. It would certainly be a good explanation for the numerous UFO sightings in this area. 

Fate l’amore fino a perdere il respiro, con il cuore che vi batte tra i denti. Fate l’amore, unite i corpi e legate le anime, fatele vibrare insieme come corde di una chitarra, fatevi trasportare da questa musica in un infinito vortice di libertà. Non sono volgari i corpi che si amano, volgari sono i pregiudizi dell’invidia, le voci mortali dominate da una morale illogica. Quindi fate l’amore, con l’anima, il corpo, gli occhi, amatevi fin che la carne non si consuma, fin che ha un senso, e anche oltre.
—  Fate l’amore
Solar System: Things to Know This Week

It’s the time of year for summer break, swimming, and oh, yes storms. June 1 marks the beginning of hurricane season on the Atlantic coast, but we’re not alone. Our neighboring planets have seen their fair share of volatile weather, too (like the Cassini spacecraft’s view of the unique six-sided jet stream at Saturn’s north pole known as “the hexagon”). 

This week, we present 10 of the solar system’s greatest storms.

1. Jupiter’s Great Red Spot

With tumultuous winds peaking at 400 mph, the Great Red Spot has been swirling wildly over Jupiter’s skies for at least 150 years and possibly much longer. People saw a big spot on Jupiter as early as the 1600s when they started stargazing through telescopes, though it’s unclear whether they were looking at a different storm. Today, scientists know the Great Red Spot has been there for a while, but what causes its swirl of reddish hues remains to be discovered. More >

2. Jupiter’s Little Red Spot

Despite its unofficial name, the Little Red Spot is about as wide as Earth. The storm reached its current size when three smaller spots collided and merged in the year 2000. More >

3. Saturn’s Hexagon

The planet’s rings might get most of the glory, but another shape’s been competing for attention: the hexagon. This jet stream is home to a massive hurricane tightly centered on the north pole, with an eye about 50 times larger than the average hurricane eye on Earth. Numerous small vortices spin clockwise while the hexagon and hurricane spin counterclockwise. The biggest of these vortices, seen near the lower right corner of the hexagon and appearing whitish, spans about 2,200 miles, approximately twice the size of the largest hurricane on Earth. More>

4. Monster Storm on Saturn 

A tempest erupted in 2010, extending approximately 9,000 miles north-south large enough to eventually eat its own tail before petering out. The storm raged for 200 days, making it the longest-lasting, planet-encircling storm ever seen on Saturn. More >

5. Mars’ Dust Storm 

Better cover your eyes. Dust storms are a frequent guest on the Red Planet, but one dust storm in 2001 larger by far than any seen on Earth raised a cloud of dust that engulfed the entire planet for three months. As the Sun warmed the airborne dust, the upper atmospheric temperature rose by about 80 degrees Fahrenheit. More >

6. Neptune’s Great Dark Spot

Several large, dark spots on Neptune are similar to Jupiter’s hurricane-like storms. The largest spot, named the “Great Dark Spot” by its discoverers, contains a storm big enough for Earth to fit neatly inside. And, it looks to be an anticyclone similar to Jupiter’s Great Red Spot. More >

7. Sun Twister 

Not to be confused with Earth’s tornadoes, a stalk-like prominence rose up above the Sun, then split into about four strands that twisted themselves into a knot and dispersed over a two-hour period. This close-up shows the effect is one of airy gracefulness. More >

8. Titan’s Arrow-shaped Storm 

The storm blew across the equatorial region of Titan, creating large effects in the form of dark and likely “wet” from liquid hydrocarbons areas on the surface of the moon. The part of the storm visible here measures 750 miles in length east-to-west. The wings of the storm that trail off to the northwest and southwest from the easternmost point of the storm are each 930 miles long. More >

9. Geomagnetic Storms

On March 9, 1989, a huge cloud of solar material exploded from the sun, twisting toward Earth. When this cloud of magnetized solar material called a coronal mass ejection reached our planet, it set off a chain of events in near-Earth space that ultimately knocked out an entire power grid area to the Canadian province Quebec for nine hours. More >

10. Super Typhoon Tip

Back on Earth, Typhoon Tip of 1979 remains the biggest storm to ever hit our planet, making landfall in Japan. The tropical cyclone saw sustained winds peak at 190 mph and the diameter of circulation spanned approximately 1,380 miles. Fortunately, we now have plans to better predict future storms on Earth. NASA recently launched a new fleet of hurricane-tracking satellites, known as the Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS), which will use the same GPS technology you and I use in our cars to measure wind speed and ultimately improve how to track and forecast hurricanes. More >

Discover more lists of 10 things to know about our solar system HERE.

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Often our atmosphere’s transparency masks the beautiful flows around us. This spectacular image shows a flight landing in Munich just after sunrise. Low-hanging clouds get sliced by the airplane’s passage and curl into its wake. The swirls are a result of the plane’s wingtip vortices, which wrap from the high-pressure underside of the wing toward the low-pressure upperside. The vortices stretch behind in the plane’s wake, creating turbulence that can be dangerous to following planes. In fact, these vortices are a major determining factor in the frequency of take-off and landing on a given runway. The larger a plane, the larger its wingtip vortices and the more time it takes for the turbulence of its passage to dissipate to a safe level for the next aircraft. (Image credit: T. Harsch; submitted by Larry S.)

North North Temperate Zone Little Red Spot : On July 11, the Juno spacecraft once again swung near the turbulent Jovian cloud tops. On its seventh orbital closest approach this perijove passage brought Juno within 3,500 kilometers of the Solar System’s largest planetary atmosphere. Near perijove the rotating JunoCam was able to record this stunning, clear view of one of Jupiter’s signature vortices. About 8,000 kilometers in diameter, the anticyclonic storm system was spotted in Jupiter’s North North Temperate Zone in the 1990s. That makes it about half the size of an older and better known Jovian anticyclone, the Great Red Spot, but only a little smaller than planet Earth. At times taking on reddish hues, the enormous storm system is fondly known as a North North Temperate Zone Little Red Spot. via NASA


F1 is more than just racing, it is an engineering battle. In this gif you can see the absolute control of wing tip vortices generated from the front wing. This is just an example to show the extreme aerodynamics that these vehicles are engineered for.

Have a great day!

* What are wing tip vortices ?

** Smoke angels and wing tip vortices

anonymous asked:

Food Physics please !!

Okay, this may not be exactly that ‘Food Physics’ that you are looking for but here is something that I stumbled upon very recently while cooking Ramen that is definitely interesting.

(Pardon me for the picture quality)

Wing Tip Vortices in Ramen 

One can use the flavoring that comes along with the Ramen to visualize the particle motion.

If you add in the flavoring to the pan of water and run a spoon across it, then you will be able to see something very close to what you see near the wing tip. 


In the wingtip, the air from a higher pressure wants to move to the region of lower pressure. 

And as a result, this forms vortices ( fancy name for the swirling motion of air ) known as Wingtip Vortex. ( because its formed in the wing tips!!! )

In the case of the Ramen, the spoon plays the role of the airplane wing producing a vortex that is similar to the one that you observe on the wing tips of airplanes.

Definitely something that anyone can try out.

Have fun and thanks for asking!

** Also check out : Crazy pool vortex by PhysicsGirl

Io sono brutta. Non nel senso letterale del termine, credo. Ho un visino carino e se mi impegno un po’, posso fare la mia bella figura. Sono brutta però, brutta comunque. Lo sono perchè cammino sempre a testa bassa, in una conversazione con più di due persone non riesco a parlare, se c'è da conoscere qualcuno sono capace di dire soltanto ‘piacere’ e di arrossire. Sono brutta perchè mi sento sempre fuori luogo, inadatta, incapace, inferiore al resto del mondo, insicura. Sono quel tipo di persona che se è triste o arrabbiata, non finge di essere al settimo cielo. Sono brutta, non guardo mai negli occhi le persone per paura che capiscano il vortice di pensieri che mi risucchia ogni giorno e ogni notte.

“Tante volte siamo noi che non vogliamo vivere, ma preferiamo lasciarci andare in questo vortice di tristezza.
Sai perché?
Per vivere ci vuole impegno, sacrificio, forza di volontà.
Vuoi davvero vivere? Puoi.
Butta via le lamette, apri le tende, migliorati, esci, poniti degli obbiettivi e raggiungili, impegnati in qualcosa.
Non è facile ma nemmeno impossibile.
Tu puoi farcela.
Non ti capiscono?
Non importa.
Impara tu a capirti.
Chi sei?
Cosa vuoi?
Che piega vuoi dare alla tua vita?
Tu puoi farcela.”

–Federica Maneli, “Pensieri Scomposti”.