Volcanic eruptions are one of the most powerful natural forces on our planet.
Making your own erupting volcano is a great way to start learning about these incredible geological features.
Do not try this experiment indoors. This experiment should be done outdoors.
What you need for this experiment:
- Soda (I recommend diet soda because it's less sticky to clean up afterwards)
- Mentos candy
- Eye protection
I would also recommend wearing grubby clothes, you may get splashed with soda.
Once you have on eye protection, open up the soda. Take a couple of Mentos out of the wrapper.
The more that you use, the bigger your eruption should be. As soon as you drop the candy into the soda, back away quickly, and watch what happens!
You can also get creative here, try cutting up the Mentos first to see if that makes the reaction different. Or even try other candy, just see what happens! Have fun with this!
The science behind what makes this eruption work is a process called nucleation.
The tiny bumps on the surface of the Mentos are kind of like the surface of the moon, there are a bunch of little pits. When you drop the candy into the soda, those pits in the candy allow a physical reaction to begin, rapidly breaking the bonds between the soda and the dissolved carbon dioxide within the soda.