Water Molecules

Water in its liquid state is in its form because of the hydrogen bonding.   The molecules are in a state of continual state of agitation because of the above freezing temperature. The thermal agitation or vibration becomes very less(almost a null) when it solidifies at 0 degree centigrade. Now imagine a non-freezing temperature where the the molecules are constantly making and breaking the hydrogen bonds with their neighbors.

What happens when an electric field is applied to them?
As the applied electric field is gradually increased, the molecules are forced to align against the feeble(compared to the applied field) hydrogen bonds. You can see from the video that the electric field is slowly increasing and they are all aligning to form a perfect array. The reason for this is the presence of polarity within the molecule. The field is applied in this case downwards. (Positive on the top; Negative at the bottom)

Note: Since there are so many interactions at any given time, it is difficult to simulate the exact transition. Just to give an idea of how things happen, I have given them random orientations and a small random displacement over their mean position for every frame of animation. But the extent of randomness decreases gradually and it eventually dies out at the end.

Watch in 720p or 1080p if you want better quality.

The Alignment


The Misalignment

Now the electric field is gradually decreased and made zero. The molecules go about their usual business constantly changing their position and alignment.


The Full Cycle

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