Floating and sinking of needles, nails and disks
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Submission date: 29. Oct. 2008
MSC-Numbers: 76B45, 53A10
Keywords and phrases: floating bodies, capillary surfaces, surface tension
Explicit criteria are determined under which a long horizontal circular cylinder or a thin horizontal circular disk will float or not float in stable equilibrium on a liquid surface, under the influence of gravity and of surface tension. Attention is centered on configurations for which the density of the body exceeds that of the ambient liquid, so that in a downward gravity field there is no absolute energy minimum when the liquid bath is infinitely deep.