Dry Ice

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The big Idea

Dry ice is the name for carbon dioxide in its heavy state. In ~ room temperature, it will certainly go from a solid come a gas directly. If carbon dioxide gas is invisible, the very cold gas causes water vapor in the air to condense into water droplets, thus creating fog.

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The temperature of the surface of a block of heavy carbon dioxide (dry ice) is -78.5 degrees C (-109.8 levels F). As soon as it it s okay to this temperature, carbon dioxide bypasses the liquid state and goes directly into a gas in a procedure called sublimation. One lb of dry ice renders 250 liters of carbon dioxide gas! If you warm a block of dry ice, by placing it in heat water for instance, it will sublimate more quickly. The fog that appears to be coming turn off a block that dry ice cream is actually no the carbon dioxide itself however rather water vapor from the air, condensing because of the cooling impact of the carbon dioxide. This impact is specifically pronounced in the moist air above a warm container that water; thus, putting dry ice in warmth water not only speeds up its sublimation but creates a most fog.

In any kind of closed container above -78.5 levels C, sublimating dry ice will develop a lot of pressure. (It is necessary not to let this pressure develop up: see security notes below.) In the device in the video, the pressure forces gas the end of a nozzle that has actually been dipped in a soap solution, thus developing a fog and carbon dioxide filled bubble.

The soap bubble, choose all soap balloon , is make of a class of water molecules sandwiched between two great of soap molecules. Soap molecules have a hydrophilic ("water-loving") end, and also a hydrophobic ("water-fearing") end, and also they room arranged in the bubble v the hydrophobic end pointing both means out the the bubble movie (both right into the bubble center and out right into the world). The hydrophilic ends point into the center of the balloon layer whereby the water is trapped.

Materials and also Set-up

dry ice cream (available at plenty of grocery stores, transported in a cooler) warm water "leaky faucet apparatus" 1:10 mixture that high quality soap (Joy or Dawn occupational well) and water (e.g. 1 T soap to 10 T water) cup

The apparatus can be built from schedule 40 PVC fittings. Use a 3" or 4" Y for the bottom v a cleanout plug for introducing water and dry ice. Mitigate the dimension to 1" or 1 1/2" PVC together you go up, and also then narrow to a 1/2" or 3/4" nozzle. This apparatus can additionally be made v a soda bottle and also tubing; just reduced a door in the top-side of the soda bottle and also use modeling clay come secure the tubing. If you usage a soda bottle, the door does not need to seal perfectly for this come work, though taping that closed will average that an ext of the carbon dioxide will certainly be pressure out the nozzle.


Put warmth water in the base of your apparatus, include a ping pong ball-sized chunk of dry ice, and also close it up, enabling the press to push the carbon dioxide and also fog out of the nozzle. Emboldened the nozzle into the cup with the soap mixture and also watch the bubbles form. Once a bubble is huge enough, it will autumn on that own and also break, publication the carbon dioxide and water droplets the contained. Girlfriend will need to periodically dive the nozzle into the soap to keep bubbles forming. When the dry ice cream chunk is gone, reset the device with brand-new warm water and also a new chunk of dry ice.

Safety Issues

Dry ice will freeze your skin and cause frosting if tackled directly. Use tongs or insulated gloves.

If you space driving v dry ice in the car, keep the windows open, as elevated carbon dioxide levels in the auto can it is in dangerous; the exact same is true if you have actually dry ice cream in a small enclosed room.

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Never put dry ice right into a close up door container. The container may explode v catastrophic results.