The Kid Should See This

The beautiful physics and math of sneezes

If you don’t cover your mouth when you sneeze, that sneeze and the germs within it are explosively set free into the surrounding area. But where do the droplets travel and how far can they reach? No one had done much research into the physics of sneezes and coughs…

To address this knowledge gap, Lydia Bourouiba and John Bush of MIT’s Applied Mathematics Lab used high speed cameras and fluid mechanics to reveal why we’ve grossly underestimated the role of gas clouds in these violent expirations.

From Science Friday, this is really Nothing to Sneeze At.

Follow that video with this Schlieren imaging clip of a man breathing and coughing…

In the archives: Catching Up with the Flu, How A Virus Invades Your Body, and more Schlieren imaging in What Does Sound Look Like?

This feature is being tested. Saves will disappear if you clear cookies. Find saved videos here.

🌈 Related videos

What does the word ‘theory’ mean in science?

Rion Nakaya

Straightening teeth with dental braces: An 18-month time lapse

Rion Nakaya

How glow-in-the-dark jellyfish inspired a scientific revolution

Rion Nakaya

Go inside an ice cave to see nature’s most beautiful blue

Rion Nakaya

Imaginary Friend Society, animations for kids facing cancer

Rion Nakaya

Catching Up With Flu: Using the Web as an early warning signal

Rion Nakaya

Broken Wrist, a classic from Sesame Street

Rion Nakaya

How A Children’s Toy Led To An Essential Medical Device

Rion Nakaya

Every Last Drop: How to Save Water

Rion Nakaya

Browse the TKSST Video Collections

Get 7 smart videos delivered every week.