5 Science Tricks w/ Explanation | Summary and Q&A

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September 21, 2016
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Physics Girl
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5 Science Tricks w/ Explanation

TL;DR

Physics tricks like balancing forks and rising water levels are explained through simple experiments.

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Key Insights

  • 🖐️ The center of mass plays a crucial role in determining the stability of objects.
  • 🥵 Heat and expansion of air can cause water to rise when a match is burned and covered.
  • 💦 Bubbles in carbonated water can make objects float due to the buoyant effect.
  • 😎 Sealing a glass with a plate creates suction and allows the plate to lift with the glass.
  • 🖐️ Understanding the physics behind these tricks can make them more enjoyable and explain the phenomena at play.
  • 📣 The action gap in retirement savings is a significant concern for many Americans.
  • 💾 Prudential's survey highlights the importance of starting to save for retirement early and estimating the required savings.

Transcript

Hi all, I'm Diana. Last week I made a video with five of my favorite physics tricks and promised that I would share the physics of those this week, which I will deliver. But what you didn't see in that video is that when you hear about these demos, they sound so simple and so easy to set up, but that was not our experience when we tried these out f... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: Why do the forks balance on the edge of the glass?

The forks balance because their center of mass hangs below the edge of the glass, making it harder for them to topple over.

Q: What causes the water to rise when a match is burned and covered?

As the match burns, heat is produced, which speeds up air molecules and causes the air to expand. When the match goes out, the air contracts, creating a lower pressure that forces the water to rise.

Q: Why do some objects sink and then float in carbonated water?

Carbonated water contains dissolved carbon dioxide, and when the pressure is released, bubbles form. These bubbles attach to rough surfaces, like the peanuts, creating a buoyant effect and causing them to float.

Q: How does the suction trick with a plate and glass work?

By sealing the glass with a plate, the air inside the glass has lower pressure than the atmosphere outside. The constant atmospheric pressure pushes harder upward on the plate, causing it to lift with the glass.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The center of mass of objects determines their stability. Forks can balance on the edge of a glass because their center of mass hangs below the glass.

  • When a match is burned and covered, the air inside the glass cools down and contracts, creating a lower pressure that forces the water to rise.

  • Tap water and carbonated water behave differently due to the presence of carbon dioxide bubbles. Peanuts float in carbonated water because bubbles attach to them, creating a buoyant effect.

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