Pressure oscillations in a chemical garden

J. Pantaleone, A. Toth, D. Horvath, L. Rosefigura, W. Morgan, J. Maselko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)


When soluble metal salts are placed in a silicate solution, chemical gardens grow. These gardens are treelike structures formed of long thin hollow tubes. The growth is driven by the increase in internal pressure from osmosis. One particular case is examined here, calcium chloride in a solution of sodium trisilicate. We directly measure the internal pressure of a silicate garden as it grows via a series of relaxation oscillations. From these observations we deduce the stresses in the membrane and discuss how they influence the growth of tubes. Also we estimate the critical stress and the average Young's modulus for the silicate garden's membrane.

Original languageEnglish
Article number056221
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 19 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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