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06-30-07, 08:35 PM #1
VERY IMPRESSIVE Diet Coke & Mentos Experiments
Video 1: http://www.eepybird.com/dcm1.html
Video 2: http://www.eepybird.com/exp214-p.html
Video 3: http://www.eepybird.com/exp214.html
(for best results, play all three at the same time )
There has been a lot of discussion online about why Diet Coke and Mentos make such an interesting combination. What everyone can agree on is that the carbon dioxide that has been compressed into the soda escapes so rapidly that the pressure pushes the soda out of the bottle. Itís like shaking a bottle before you open it, but even more dramatic.
Gum Arabic? Not So Fast.
Several people theorized that a substance called gum arabic in the Mentos breaks the surface tension of the soda, allowing the carbon dioxide bubbles to escape rapidly. This explanation doesnít completely work. One thing that casts doubt on the gum arabic theory is that several items (like pennies!) that contain no gum arabic whatsoever also cause soda to foam violently. Several chemists have since stepped forward to say that while gum arabic may contribute to the reaction, that canít be the only cause.
Making Lots of Bubbles
These chemists are saying that the primary cause is physical, not chemical. Their explanation: nucleation sites. If you have a liquid that is supersaturated with gas (like soda, which is pumped full of carbon dioxide), a nucleation site is a place where the gas is able to form bubbles. Nucleation sites can be scratches on a surface or specks of dust Ė anywhere that you have a high surface area in a very small volume. That's where bubbles can form.
Mentos seem to be loaded with nucleation sites. In other words, there are so many microscopic nooks and crannies on the surface of a Mento that an incredible number of bubbles will form when you drop it in a bottle of soda. Since the Mentos are also heavy enough to sink, they react with the soda all the way to the bottom. The escaping bubbles quickly turn into a raging foam, and the pressure builds dramatically. Before you know it, you've got a big geyser happening!
So is it dangerous to drink soda and eat Mentos? Well, a lot of the fizz goes away as you drink. Then when bubbles are released in your stomach, your stomach can expand a bit, and it also has ways of releasing excess pressure. Do not, repeat, do not be stupid and test the limits of your stomach. Don't even think about it.
What else besides Mentos mints make a big reaction? What about Lifesavers? Does Mountain Dew work as well as Diet Coke? Take a look at our detailed comparison experiments to find out.
Thanks to Fred Senese of the Department of Chemistry at Frostburg State University in Maryland for this explanation that discusses both surface tension and nucleation sites.
Using EepyBird as an example the guys at MythBusters just recently based an entire episode on the chaos when diet cola and mentos mix. For more info click here. There's been a good discussion of the science questions on Ask MetaFilter.
Lee Marek was one of the first to try Mentos.
Steve Spangler has some good demos and explanations.
National Public Radio did a story on Diet Coke & Mentos in April, 2006.
Make sure to see the infamous Super Burp.
You can see nucleation sites in action if you coat the inside of a small glass with vegetable oil. Move the glass around to get a nice smooth coating of oil and then pour in some soda. What happens? No fizz. Why? No nucleation sites. Now sprinkle in some granulated sugar. What happens? Lots of fizz! Why? Lots of nucleation sites!
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07-01-07, 03:24 AM #2Banned
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07-01-07, 08:41 AM #3
Mythbusters did this onceAlpha Phi Sigma Alum - Alpha Delta Chapter
07-01-07, 12:50 PM #4
07-01-07, 04:25 PM #5
Go to youtube and put in diet coke mentos and they have dozens of them,the best one by far is the 2 guys in lab coats that do the "symphony"
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By The Lostralian in forum General TopicsReplies: 25Last Post: 07-08-07, 02:41 AM