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Is surface tension conservative?

  1. Apr 30, 2015 #1
    Hello, everybody. Is surface tension a conservative force? I think so, because it is related to surface energy. But I am not 100% sure. Thanks a lot.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 30, 2015 #2

    Andy Resnick

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    Interesting question.

    I think 'no', because the contact angle can assume a range of values (hysteresis, canthotaxis) and the surface will still be considered in thermodynamic equilibrium. On the other hand, the existence of capillary waves would seem to imply the converse.
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