Image: Eureka Prize: Ethanol vortex

Eureka Prize: Ethanol vortex

For promotion of New Scientist Eureka Prize for Science Photography only.

Gavan Mitchell
© Gavan Mitchell


By squeezing an opened bottle of methylated spirits, I have captured the moment when the ethanol vapour is shaped into a toroidal vortex as it exits the mouth of the bottle. This normally invisible gas flow can be observed under an RGB Schlieren optical arrangement with the full spectrum of visible light. These types of vortices are similar to those used by jellyfish for propulsion, and have been studied for application in submersible vehicles.


Last Updated: