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Thursday, January 13, 2005

How to Create Fog

With a Siberian cold mass descending upon the upper Midwest tonight, I thought it’d be good to take some time to remind everyone of a particularly favorite experiment that is only possible to fully enjoy when the temperatures dip below zero degrees (Fahrenheit).

Most of you probably remember this experiment from when I posted about it last year when the temperatures in the Brainerd area were -30°F, but for those who don’t, here goes:

Take a pot, fill with water, and place on the stove. Make sure to bring the water to a boil. After the water is boiling, it is simply amazing to bring the water outside to see what happens when a 212°F liquid is exposed to -10°F (or so) air. You can throw the water up into the air or dump it on the ground; no matter what you do, the result will be the same: the water will immediately form a huge cloud of vapor that can linger around for up to a minute.

So, what are you waiting for, why don’t you go outside and see what happens to boiling water in subzero temperatures for yourself; actually seeing this experiment done is much more impressive than reading about it.

One disclaimer for anyone planning to do this experiment: I highly recommend wearing gloves when going outside to throw the pot pf boiling water up in the air. Until the water has gone from a liquid state to a vapor, it still is around 212°F, and getting burned or scalded is very easy to do. Also be sure to stay safe when around the hot stove!

Here’s a crude video I made earlier this evening (the time on the camcorder is not correct) to show what this experiment looks like. I dumped the water in an enclosed area – a porch – meaning that the vapor cloud lingered around a bit longer than it ordinarily may have. Although I poured the water on the ground, very little ice formed, since the boiling water was not able to remain in a liquid state for very long.

1 Comments:

Blogger Kaila said...

Mitch,
Thanks for the artikel. It was really interesting... In some ways I think it's cool that english is being infilterated throughout the world, yet in other ways I think it's sad. I mean, why do we have such a strong influence on other cultures? Our culture isn't very good. I mean, look at our fearless leader, who is ripping the country apart...Anyway, thank you, and have a good weekend.

Fri Jan 14, 04:44:00 PM CST  

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Mitch's Blog began on December 23, 2001