Doscientos años de meniscos líquidos (1805-2005).

Miguel Ángel Rodríguez Valverde, María Tirado Miranda


The second centenary of the manuscript written by Thomas Young about Capillarity, An Essay on the Cohesion of Fluids, Philos Trans R Soc Lond, 95, p. 65-87, is celebrated this year 2005. The current paper presents an historical review about the authorship of the two most important equations of Capillarity: Young-Laplace equation and Young equation. Authors put emphasis on the determining role of Thomas Young for the development of Surface Thermodynamics through his valuable work. The validity of both equations nowadays is evident. Hence, many interfacial techniques based on the analysis of drop shapes employ axisymmetric solutions of the Young-Laplace equation. Additionally, the ancient Young equation, valid for ideal systems, is still chosen as the starting point to model complex wetting phenomena.

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