This experiment demonstrates how air always goes from high pressure toward low pressure. It also shows how Bernoulli's principle works.
Here's What You Need: a plastic liter bottle; a straw; paper; marshmallow.
Here's What You Do: Place the bottle on its side and put a crumpled up piece of paper in the mouth. Make sure the paper is smaller than the mouth of the bottle and isn't touching the sides. Next blow through a straw at the piece of paper. Your gut tells you that the paper will be pushed right into the bottle but it actually pops out of the bottle onto the table. Very Cool! Now make sure you don't blow real hard through the straw and directly at the paper because it will indeed go in the bottle. You want to blow more toward the mouth of the bottle.
Why It Works: The "empty" bottle is not really empty. It's full of air. You can't blow any more air into the bottle so when you are blowing through the straw, you are moving air faster around the mouth of the bottle. This (according to Bernoulli's principle) is creating a low pressure area outside the bottle. Since air blows from high pressure (inside the bottle) to low pressure (outside the bottle) the paper pops out of the bottle instead of going in. Nice and easy demonstration.
My Rating: I give it 4 out of 5 beakers. This isn't the flashiest experiment but it is a bit mind-boggling and makes you think. The kids will love it.
Once again a big tip of the hat goes to the Steve Spangler website . This was actually his experiment of the week this week. If you want more ideas for experiments, head to that website and I'll keep testing those and others out right here on "Will It Work"
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