Drops and bubbles in the environment

Bubbles and drops are ubiquitous in nature and play critical roles in many important environmental problems. Most familiar is the life-sustaining role of the water droplets that are rain. Less familiar are their roles in chemical and biological transport at the air-sea interface, the thermal budget of the atmosphere, volcanoes and exploding lakes, and disease transmission. The goal of this review is two-fold. First, we review the fundamental physics of the formation and dynamics of droplets and bubbles, thereby providing a framework for understanding their myriad roles in fluid transport and the sustenance of life within the aqueous and aerial environments. Second, we review the many environmental settings in which they arise, briefly reviewing well-studied problems while highlighting exciting new research directions.

See paper: Bourouiba & Bush (2013).