Vernier Software and Technology - Celebrating 35 years
Vernier Software & Technology
Innovative Uses

Capillary Action

Observe different types of capillary action with a cool cup of water and various types of paper using the FLIR ONE thermal camera and the Thermal Analysis app. You can also investigate the capillary action of different liquids with the same type of paper. The sample data below shows the differences in the capillary action of copy paper (left) versus a paper towel (middle) and facial tissue (right) after being dipped in water. The FLIR ONE thermal camera makes it easy to observe the water as it moves up the material. It also shows the temperature comparison as it does so. Capillary action is an important foundational idea in chemistry as it applies to chromatography, material science, and medical science.

A piece of copy paper, a piece of brown paper towel, and a piece of facial tissue are each lowered into a container of room-temperature water. The tissue wicks the water highest during a 7 minute experiment.
A piece of copy paper, a piece of brown paper towel, and a piece of facial tissue are each lowered into a container of room-temperature water. The tissue wicks the water highest during a 7 minute experiment.

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