Physicists have made water run uphill quite literally under its own steam. The droplets propel themselves over metal sheets scored with a carefully designed array of grooves. The US scientists did the experiment to demonstrate how the random motion of water molecules in hot steam could be channelled into a directed force. … Droplets can also climb over steps, and up inclines of up to 12 degrees. Filmed with high-speed cameras, the droplets appear to take on a life of their own, sliding along like sloppy amoebae. …Many chips have cooling circuits nowadays, but these require pumps to drive the coolant, which in turn generate even more heat.
Suitably micro-patterned channels, argues Dr Linke, would make the coolant flow automatically.
“It would be very neat if we could use the heat from the chip to be the pump, because you would not need any additional power, but also because the pumping only happens when the thing is warm; it would also be a thermostat at the same time. So it would all be in one package.” – bbc