Are you here after seeing the trick on your social media feed where Coca-Cola explodes after some Mentos sweets are added to it? Tempted to do something similar or maybe something a bit more subtle? Science appeals to the young and naughty child in all of us; call it a mix of DeeDee and Dexter from Dexter’s Laboratory. You can also use either of the following tricks for your next Chemistry class. And the good thing about it is you can get to impress your friends and classmates with only a few and very affordable ingredients.
Excited? Well so are we! Put on your nutty professor white coat and let’s get to it!
Who knew water and fire were friends?
What you need: a candle, a glass, a matchbox, and a saucer.
Set the candle in the middle of the saucer and light it. Next, fill the saucer with some water. Slowly, place the glass over the candle. The moment the candle goes out, observe the water levels. The water will make its way into the glass.
The science behind it: the heat inside the glass causes the air to expand and some will move out. Due to the limited supply of oxygen, the candle will go out. As the air cools inside, there will a drop in pressure and part vacuum. The water will be forced inside to fill the vacuum.
A punctured bag
What you need: a zippy bag filled with water and pencil crayons.
First up, you need to fill the zippy bag with water. Ensure about 1/10ths of it is empty and close the bag. Slowly but with steady pressure push the pencils through the bag. You expected the bag to lead, right? Well, that’s the beauty of science.
The science behind it: The water doesn’t spill because of the material of the zippy bag. Zippy bag (official name: Ziploc) is made of polymers. The material is quite flexible allowing the sharp crayons to slide in and also seal around the pencil. Therefore, no water will leak out.
The next Dr. Strange
What you need: a clear plastic bottle, water, a flashlight.
We recommend you do this in the kitchen; no need to be in the wrong with your parent.
Make a hole in the bottle, about two inches from the bottom. Cap it with something and fill the bottle with water.
Darken the room some. Turn on the flashlight and limit the beam to a narrow strip. Remove the cap from the hole, allowing the water to flow in an arc. When you shine the narrow beam of light at the stream, the light will bend with the arc. And where the water hits the surface (preferably the sink), there will be a glow.
The Science behind it: instead of passing through the water, the light is reflected into the water. It will follow the bend of the water. Do you know of optical fibers? This is the science that is used to transmit data through them.