Experiments with KVRR Meteorologist Scott Sincoff: Lunch Bag Chemistry

Fun and Easy Science Experiments

This week, Meteorologist Scott Sincoff experimented by creating an Exploding Lunch Bag.

What you need:

  • One small (sandwich or quart size) freezer zip-lock bag
  • Baking Soda
  • Warm Water
  • Vinegar
  • Measuring Cup
  • Tissues

How you conduct the experiment:

  1. Go outside – or at least do this in the kitchen sink.
  2. Put 1/4 cup of pretty warm water into the bag.
  3. Add 1/2 cup of vinegar to the water in the bag.
  4. Put 3 teaspoons of baking soda into the middle of the tissue
  5. Wrap the the baking soda up in the tissue by folding the tissue around it.
  6. You will have to work fast now – partially zip the bag closed but leave enough space to add the baking soda packet. Put the tissue with the baking soda into the bag and quickly zip the bag completely closed.
  7. Put the bag in the sink or down on the ground (outside) and step back. The bag will start to expand, and expand, and if all goes well…POP!

Why does it explode?

When baking soda and vinegar mix, it becomes an acid-base reaction, and the two household ingredients work together to create a gas. The gas fills up the zip-lock bag, and when it can’t hold it anymore, it pops!

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