AAPT Abstract Archive

Abstract Information

  Session: SPS Undergraduate Research and Outreach Poster Session
  Paper Type: Poster
  Title: An Accretion Model for a Falling Raindrop
  Meeting: 2013 Summer Meeting: Portland, Oregon
  Location: N/A
  Time: 8:00PM
  Author: Ngan Le, Montgomery College
240-393-5132, nle45@montgomerycollege.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: This mechanics problem involves a raindrop gaining mass due to accretion as it falls through a cloud of droplets in a non-uniform gravitational field. This article investigates the motion of very small droplets, those of diameter less than 0.003 inches, which are falling at relatively slow speed, less than 0.188 m/s. With these conditions, the raindrop is experiencing mostly laminar air flow without turbulent air flow when the Reynolds number is less than 1. Using both analytical and numerical methods, we are able to predict the existence of terminal velocity of falling raindrop, and terminal acceleration in the case of accretion. This mathematical model of falling raindrops proposes a relationship to rocket ship problem which is considered a reversed process.
  Footnotes: Ngan Le, is a rising sophomore, at Montgomery College, MD. Dr. Eugene Li, Professor of Physics, is her mentor and research project advisor. The research was conducted under the support of a FIPSE grant from the Department of Education, and a STEM-access grant.
  Presentation: AAPT_Poster_Ngan Le.pptx

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