A meniscus is a curve developed on the upper surconfront of a liquid inside a container. This curve is formed by the surchallenge tensionin between the liquid and the container holding the liquid. If the molecules in the liquid are even more attracted to the sides of the container than to each various other, the liquid will stick to the sides of the container. When this happens, the meniscus curve bends down and is called concave. Most liquids form this type of meniscus. Water is awidespread example of a liquid that forms a concave meniscus.

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In some instances, the molecules of a liquid are more attracted to each various other than the sides of the container, the liquid will pull away from the side of the container and create an upward curve, or convex meniscus. This kind of meniscus is sometimes known as a ‘backward meniscus’, however the proper term is convex meniscus. A prevalent liquid that forms a convex meniscus is liquid mercury.


Convex menisci are read from the optimal of the curve at eye level.

How To Read A Meniscus

If the liquid develops a curve, how are you expected to make a specific measurement of the amount of liquid in a container? To check out a meniscus, you first have to view what kind of meniscus your liquid forms. If the meniscus is a concave meniscus, check out at the lowest level of the curve. If the meniscus is convex, take your measurement at the greatest point of the curve.

The long answer: To check out a meniscus, you first have to watch what kind of meniscus your liquid forms. If the meniscus is a concave meniscus, review at the lowest level of the curve. If the meniscus is convex, take your measurement at the greatest suggest of the curve.

The brief answer: Take your measurement from the facility of the meniscus.

It’s that easy. Make sure to hold your container at eye level and read at the level of the facility of the meniscus.

Bonus Meniscus Fun Fact

Meniscus is from the Greek word mēniskosdefinition “crescent moon”.

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Bonus Meniscus Fun Fact #2

The plural of meniscus is menisci.


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