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Mad Professor: Concoct Extremely Weird Science Projectsby Mark Frauenfelder
There are five different kinds of islands: barrier, continental, coral, tectonic, and volcanic. We Zoobers work on a coral island, which is made of the limestone body parts of countless tiny coral animals. I really wish that I lived on a volcanic island, but since that isn't possible, I have fun making toy volcanoes in my laboratory. Lava glows red hot everywhere, and I like to imagine this volcano is on Mars. Here's how I make it.
1. Stand the bottle on the baking sheet or layers of newspaper (to prevent spilling on the floor or table).
2. Spoon the baking soda into the bottle.
3. Mix the vinegar with the dishwashing soap and a couple drops of red food coloring. (Add some glitter if you want a sparkly volcano.) Stir gently until it's mixed well.
4. Pour the vinegar mixture into the bottle (use a funnel if that's easier) and get back.
HOW IT WORKS: When mixed together, baking soda and vinegar produce carbon dioxide (CO2). This is the same bubbly gas in soft drinks. As the gas expands, it shoots out of the neck of the bottle like an angry volcano. (Try green food coloring for a Venusian volcano.)
Copyright © 2003 by Mark Frauenfelder
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