Oil Emulsion Experiment (OEE) - 01.09.14

Overview | Description | Applications | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

ISS Science for Everyone

Science Objectives for Everyone Oil Emulsion is an experiment that will be used to teach students basic principles of fluid physics. Identical experiments will be performed on ISS and in the classroom to compare mixing oil and water in microgravity to mixing them on Earth.

Science Results for Everyone Information Pending

This content was provided by Hartmut Ripken, Ph.D., and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.
Information provided courtesy of the Erasmus Experiment Archive.

Experiment Details


Principal Investigator(s)

  • Hartmut Ripken, Ph.D., German Aerospace Center (DLR), Cologne, Germany
  • Co-Investigator(s)/Collaborator(s)
    Information Pending


    German Aerospace Center (DLR), Cologne, , Germany

    Sponsoring Space Agency
    European Space Agency (ESA)

    Sponsoring Organization
    Information Pending

    Research Benefits
    Information Pending

    ISS Expedition Duration
    April 2006 - September 2006

    Expeditions Assigned

    Previous ISS Missions
    Information Pending

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    Experiment Description

    Research Overview

    • Oil Emulsion will be used as a teaching tool in the classroom to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers.

    • A container of oil and colored water will be mixed on ISS and on Earth in order to observe the reactions of the mixture in gravity (Earth) and microgravity (ISS).

    This experiment will be carried out by students (11-14 years old) on Earth and by Thomas Reiter during his long-duration mission on board the ISS. The space section of Oil Emulsion will be filmed and downlinked. This experiment will highlight how an oil and water emulsion behaves differently in weightlessness and under gravity conditions. A sealed container holding two immiscible fluids, clear oil and ink colored water, will be shaken until the two fluids are slightly mixed.

    The fluids' behavior in space will be filmed within defined time slots during a two week period. The data will be downlinked and the results will be shown in a specialized children's program on German public TV. The different kinds of segregation that occur during the experiment, in space and on Earth, can be observed and then explained by the teacher. This experiment can form the basis of further physics lessons, (concerning weightlessness, density, other fluid parameters) and maybe even lessons in other scientific areas. The Oil Emulsion experiment was introduced by DLR and is a cooperation between the German and the European Space Agencies.

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    Space Applications
    Information Pending

    Earth Applications
    Information Pending

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    Operational Requirements
    Information Pending

    Operational Protocols
    Information Pending

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    Results/More Information
    Information Pending

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    Related Websites

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    image The container with the oil and water mixture that is used in the Oil Emulsion investigation. (Image courtesy ESA)
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