Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Oil and Water Experiment

Over Fall Break my kids and I set out to do a handful of science experiments.  We watched a cool video of mixing red colored hot water with blue colored cold water.  In the video the hot water rose to the top when mixed with the cold water which sank to the bottom.  This makes sense given the density of hot water is slightly less that of cold water.  We set out to do the same thing and here was our result.

Nothing.  No layers present.  The hot and cold water simply mixed together.  We heated the hot water to a boil, getting it as hot as possible.  We could have made the cold water colder by dropping ice cubes in it instead of using water straight from the tap.  It's also possible I was too rough in pouring the water, causing extensive mixing.  Regardless, we were not successful.

We were determined to see something, however, so we mixed water and oil and discussed why there is a clear difference in the water versus vegetable oil layers.

The oil is less dense than water and rises to the top, creating a distinct layer.  We put some food coloring in the oil, which doesn't mix as it does in water.  The food coloring drops stayed as drops in the oil which was kind of cool to see!

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