This image illustrates the Rayleigh-Taylor instability, which is an instability occurring at the interface between two fluids of different densities. It occurs when the lighter fluid displaces the heavier one. In this particular case, a lighter oil mixed with food coloring dye is displacing the denser water. As a result of this instability, the dye permeates downward, creating a mesmerizing, firework-like pattern. This phenomenon is aptly named “Fireworks in a Jar.”
The photograph was captured using a Canon EOS Rebel T3i with an 18-55 mm lens. The jar used is a transparent plastic food jar. The background features a white plastic sheet, while the lighting setup includes two LED bulbs illuminating the jar from both sides. The original image was post-processed using the Darktable image processing app to enhance brightness and adjust the jar’s positioning.
Sharp, D. H. (1984). An overview of Rayleigh-Taylor instability. Physica D: Nonlinear Phenomena, 12(1–3), 3–18. https://doi.org/10.1016/0167-2789(84)90510-4