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Surface tension of water

  1. Jan 21, 2016 #1
    a thin film of water has surface tension due to the strong bonds present on the surface in order to counteract the net downward force and this increases the potential energy of the surface layer of particles therefore on a
    hydrophobic surface it forms a water droplet , my question is since it forms a water droplet reducing it surface area to volume ratio ;why is having a low surface energy so important because the total energy is conserved anyway ?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 21, 2016 #2

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    Total energy is not conserved; it is minimized for whatever specific case happens to hold.
     
  4. Jan 22, 2016 #3
    can you explain why it is not conserved ?
     
  5. Jan 22, 2016 #4

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    Total energy equals the sum of surface energy plus bulk phase energy, and that is surface area times surface tension (variable) plus bulk phase (essentially a constant).
     
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