Can or Bottle Crusher (Demonstration)
 

Vapor Pressure   :   Vacuum
 

Purpose:
Demonstrates gas laws by allowing students to apply knowledge to an unexplained curiosity
 

Safety:
Need to wear oven mitts or use tongs when transferring can and safety goggles should be worn by demonstrator
 

Materials:
2 Liter pop bottles
Very hot water
 

Procedure:
1. Pour very hot water into an empty bottle made of soft plastic
2. Fill the bottle about ¼ full
3. When steam shoots out of the bottle, screw the top on quickly
4. The bottle should squash inward

 
-Or-
 

Safety:
Need to wear oven mitts or use tongs when transferring the can and safety goggles should be worn by demonstrator
 

Materials:
Aluminum pop cans
Large beaker, 1000 200 mL with ice cold water
Hot plate or bunsen burner
Water
Safety goggles
Beaker tongs or oven mit
 

Procedure:
1. Add 25 mL water to pop can
2. Boil the water in the can until steam escapes continuously.
3. Using the beaker tongs, quickly invert the can into the beaker filled with ice-cold water
4. The can will collapse immediately
 

Explanation:
The steam pushes out most of the air from inside the bottle/can.  The air outside presses against the bottle/can.  There is almost no air inside to push against the can walls so it crushes the bottle or can.  This air pressure, which presses down on us all of the time is what crushes the bottle/can.
 

Clean-up:
Recycle cans and bottles
 
 

Ginger Chateauneuf, 2000.
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