Thursday, June 9, 2011

Kitchen chemistry - mentos and coke experiment

Today we conducted another science experiment using readily available household materials.

Firstly we had to put the coke bottle securely amongst the gravel.

Jaxon opened the coke bottle.... and we waited.....

Elliot took the paper tube with the mint mentos inside and lined it up with the coke bottle opening. He then pulled his hand away to let the mentos fall into the coke bottle and moved back quickly!

And..... ACTION!!!!!!!!
Instantly there was a fountain of coke spurting up above the top of the coke bottle. The mixture continued to bubble inside the bottle for quite some time.
All that was left - half a bottle of coke with mentos sunk to the bottom!

We think that there was a chemical reaction between the coke and the mentos. The carbon dioxide (in the fizz) caused the coke to be spurted up out of the bottle as soon as it came into contact with the mentos lollies.

We were left wondering........

  • Would we get the same reaction with other types of fizz or is there something special in coke that makes it react like this?
  • Would other types of lollies work so well, for example, Eclipse mints?
  • What would happen if we put a mentos and some coke in our mouth at the same time?
Mrs Lilley explained that the Mentos Mints work best because they have rough exterior coat. Bubbles are able to collect easily on the rough shell, and as they collect they join together, and therefore has a faster reaction, forcing the fizzing liquid up out of the top of the bottle.
The experiment would not work if you didn't use a bottle with a small funnel, such as a coke bottle.

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