Egg in a Bottle
In this science experiment, kids explore changes in air pressure while causing an egg to be sucked into a bottle!
Simple explanation: The burning paper causes a change in air pressure in the bottle. This causes the egg to be sucked in!
More details: The air pressure inside and outside of the bottle is the same until the burning paper is put into the bottle. The flame heats the air inside, causing it to expand. When the egg is placed on top of the bottle, it creates a seal, which causes the fire to go out. When the fire goes out, the air cools again, and contracts. As the air outside the bottle pushes in to equalize the pressure, the egg is forced in!
Adult supervision required; this experiment involves fire.
- Hardboiled egg - 1+ per class
- Glass milk bottle or similar** - 1 total
- Shortening or similar (optional)
- Marker (optional)
Peel the hardboiled egg. Use a marker to draw a face on the egg; note that the egg will go into the bottle pointy-end down.
Cut a piece of paper about 2" wide and about 2/3 as tall as your bottle. Fold it in half.
Light the paper on file, and wait about 2 seconds for it to full catch fire, then drop it flame-end first into the bottle.
Quickly place the egg, pointy side down, into the mouth of the bottle. The egg will be sucked into the bottle within a few seconds.
Choose an egg that is just slightly larger than the opening of your bottle.
If you think the egg might be too big, try adding shortening to the opening to make it slippery.
Starbucks Frappuccino bottles work perfectly for this experiment. Don't use a plastic bottle as the sides will collapse inward before the egg is sucked in.
To do this experiment more than once, use a table knife to chop up the egg inside the bottle, clean the bottle out, then repeat.