Drop-quench experiments are conducted in a vertical furnace, which is essentially a heated tube. The sample is suspended from a ceramic rod inside the tube at its hottest point (the "hot spot"). After sitting for a while above its melting temperature, the sample becomes a liquid.
I flip a switch on a "zapper box", which passes a current down to the wire holding the sample to the ceramic rod. The wire is very thin and so it burns and breaks, releasing the sample. The sample free-falls through the tube and out the bottom, into a waiting pan of water where it instantly cools, or "quenches", into a crystal-free glass.
School of Earth and Space Exploration (SESE)
Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA
kara [dot] brugman [at] gmail [dot] com
kara [dot] brugman [at] asu [dot] edu