Campers walk on water at APSU
(Posted June 20, 2018)
CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Last week, Bryan Gaither’s grocery list called for 150 pounds of cornstarch. When asked what he was doing, the Austin Peay State University physics lab manager explained he wanted to get a group of campers to walk on water.
“We’re making what’s called a non-Newtonian fluid, where the particles lock together when you add force to them,” he said.
On Wednesday afternoon, a group of former APSU physics students mixed the cornstarch with water in a plastic baby pool, creating a strange liquid that students could walk quickly across.
Once the non-Newtonian fluid was ready, high school students participating in the Govs Outdoor Teen Camp and the Governor’s School for Computational Physics took off their shoes and socks and ran safely across the liquid. If they stayed still, their feet sank into the muck.