In this experiment we will make a cloud in a water bottle using a little rubbing alcohol.
Clouds form when water vapor cools down. Warm moist air in the atmosphere rises
and the pressure reduces as it goes higher. As pressure reduces it gets colder.
Eventually the water vapor cools enough to form clouds.
- Clean Clear 16oz Plastic Water Bottle and Lid
- Rubbing Alcohol
Watch Video: Make A Cloud in A Water Bottle
Process To Make A Cloud In A Water Bottle:
- Take a 16 oz clear plastic water bottle and dump out or drink the water. Make sure your
water bottle is the lightweight kind (not heavy duty plastic that wont bend easily).
- Fill the bottom of the plastic bottle with rubbing alcohol. Swirl the alcohol around the
sides coating the inside of the bottle.
- Screw the cap on firmly.
- Grab the bottle around 1/4 of the way up from the bottom and start twisting it with both
hands in opposite directions. As you twist notice the pressure in the top begins to
increase. Keep twisting until you can twist anymore. Now the pressure is very high!
- Slowly unscrew the cap until you feel it's about to pop off. Make sure the cap is not
pointing at anyone! Really make sure the cap is not pointing at anyone. Now give the cap
one last quick flip with your finger to and let it pop off. Make sure to do it fast and not to
block the cap coming off in a bang..
- Instantly and magically the clear bottle is filled with a nice white cloud.
The Science Behind Cloud In A Bottle:
Invisible water molecules are always present in the air that surrounds us. That is what
we call water vapor. Twisting the plastic bottle compresses the air molecules inside.
When we release the cap, we are permitting the air molecules to expand. When the air
molecules expand the temperature lowers and they get colder. As they cool, the
molecules start sticking together (water / alcohol vapor, and air molecules). This
combination allows small water drops to form. Just like the clouds in the sky. Except
water vapor in the sky finds pollution and other particles to stick on as well!
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