Friday, June 24, 2011

General Science and Physics: Dry Ice

Dry ice is unlike the ice we know and love. It's frozen carbon dioxide, and it's called "dry" because it passes from the solid phase directly into the gas phase, skipping the liquid phase entirely, resulting in some AWESOMELY weird and funky behaviors! It's CRAZY-cold, so cold in fact, we only handled the dry ice with a towel or tweezers....NEVER with our bare hands!

We demonstrated its COOLNESS in the following ways...
  • compared "dry ice" to regular "wet ice"
  • produced a lot of spooky fog.
  • "poured" carbon dioxide gas into a cup on a scale and noted that it weighed more than an equal volume of air.
  • used carbon dioxide gas as a fire extinguisher (Don't panic, the fire was a single lit candle).
  • made long-lasting carbon dioxide bubbles by adding dry ice to soap solution.
  • made the dry ice "squeal" and vibrate after pressing it with a metal spoon.
  • inflated a balloon by putting a piece of dry ice inside and then tying off the open end.
The COOLEST thing we did was toasting a fantastic year of science with home-brewed soda.
Here's the recipe:
1. Pour juice into a pitcher
2. Add a block of dry ice
3. Enjoy the show as you down your cold, carbonated fruit-flavored soda!

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