Beer tapping: dynamics of bubbles after impact
Beer tapping is a well known prank where a bottle of beer is impacted from the top by a solid object, usually another bottle, leading to a sudden foam overflow. A description of the shock-driven bubble dynamics leading to foaming is presented based on an experimental and numerical study evoking the following physical picture. First, the solid impact produces a sudden downwards acceleration of the bottle creating a strong depression in the liquid bulk. The existing bubbles undergo a strong expansion and a sudden contraction ending in their collapse and fragmentation into a large amount of small bubbles. Second, the bubble clouds present a large surface area to volume ratio, enhancing the CO2 diffusion from the supersaturated liquid, hence growing rapidly and depleting the CO2. The clouds of bubbles migrate upwards in the form of plumes pulling the surrounding liquid with them and eventually resulting in the foam overflow. The sudden pressure drop that triggers the bubble dynamics with a collapse and oscillations is modelled by the Rayleigh-Plesset equation. The bubble dynamics from impact to collapse occurs over a time (t(b) similar or equal to 800 mu s) much larger than the acoustic time scale of the liquid bulk (t(ac) = 2H/c similar or equal to 80 mu s), for the experimental container of height H = 6 cm and a speed of sound around c similar or equal to 1500 m/s. This scale separation, together with the comparison of numerical and experimental results, suggests that the pressure drop is controlled by two parameters: the acceleration of the container and the distance from the bubble to the free surface.