We have had great fun with food colours and microscope slides recently reproducing an experiment with Dancing Droplets described by Nate Cira, Adrien Benusiglio and Manu Prakash. They posted a movie on Vimeo showing how to do it “Dancing Droplets: How to easily recreate the phenomena at home“.
We took up their invitation to have a go and found that red food colour was the best at pushing droplets of other food colours around.
Here’s our movie posted on You Tube ‘Red Peril’ Food Dye, from which the above gif animation was constructed.
More details about the phenomena discovered by Nate Cira can be found on Scientific American “2 Common Liquids Spontaneously Form Dancing Droplets“.
More efforts from us (sorry about the wobbly camera work):
You might decide to have a go for yourselves. We found using an automatic micropipette (200 microlitres) speeds up the procedure considerably and increases the likelihood of success.