In this science experiment we will explore the concept of rising heat or thermal currents. We
will also learn about the scientific principle of convection. We will use a tea bag and lighter to
Materials (adult supervision required)
- Tea bag
- Lighter or Matches
Watch Tea bag Missile Video
Process To Make A Tea Bag Missile
1) Use the scissors to cut the tea bag at the top where the string meets the bag. Make a nice
flat straight cut through both sides of the tea bag.
2) Empty the contents of the tea bag out.
3) Open the tea bag and shape into a cylinder.
4) Place the tea bag cylinder onto the plate.
5) Use the lighter or matches to ignite the top of the tea bag.
6) Watch it close as it burns and takes flight!
The Science Behind the Tea Bag Missile
When the tea bag is ignited hot air is generated and begins rising. As the tea bag burns
thermal convection currents start to form between the tea bag and the plate. Eventually the
tea bag has burned all the way to ash. As this happens the thermal convection currents
become stronger than the weight of the tea bag ashes and propel them into the air.
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