Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I put a wet Calphalon pot down flat on a wet synthetic countertop. None of the surfaces or liquids was hot. Bubbles started appearing a second or two later from under the rim of the pot in one area. (Video.) It looked as though air was trying to escape form under the pot and forming bubbles because of the water, perhaps as if the air pressure was greater under the pot than everywhere else. Anyone know why?

share|cite|improve this question
up vote 5 down vote accepted

I think your intuition is basically correct. I see two possible explanations:

  • If the pot or the water (or both) are warmer than the air temperature, any air trapped under the pot may be heated, increasing its pressure and/or causing it to expand.

  • Even without heating, if you get a seal between the pot and the wet surface with some air trapped underneath, the weight of the pot increases the pressure in the trapped bubbles.

share|cite|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.