Have you ever seen the Coke dropped in mentos experiment? Well, I hadn’t. The idea had come up in a couple of conversations in the past few days, so we decided to try it. BUT, we didn’t stop there. We decided to compare a store-brand coke with the real Diet Coke. After getting the supplies at the store, the kids came up with hypothesizes, and attempted the experiment.
Harrison (me): My hypothesis was that the real Diet Coke was going to shoot twice as high.
Miranda: Miranda’s hypothesis was that the real stuff would empty the bottle twice as fast.
We brought the bottles one by one out to the end of the dock and dropped a Mento in each bottle.
Result: This was rather disappointing. Both brands shot about the same height, but it was only as high as my waist.
Conclusion: The off-brand soda was about the same as the real brand Diet Coke.
Hold on a minute. You thought the post was done, didn’t you? Well, we attempted the experiment again. I had seen movies online of this drink spilling 7 feet in the air. We weren’t doing something right. Since we had already established that the off-brand cola wasn’t any different in results, we bought a bottle of off brand soda and another roll of Mentos, since Miranda and I had finished the other one already.
This time, I borrowed a socket from Grandpa’s tool chest and stacked 5 Mentos in it for easier dropping. We brought the bottle to the end of the dock, and dropped the Mentos in. This time the soda shot the 7 feet I expected.
A few random things we discovered from this experiment:
- The Mentos react with the carbonation to create the mini-explotion we see, which is why you can’t redo the experiment with the same bottle - the carbonation is gone.
- The optimal number of Mentos is two. Any more will just drop to the bottom of the bottle.
- Sockets can be slippery when wet. Make sure to have a tight grip on them when hosing off.
- Sockets also sink. If done by a lake, make sure to do it in an area where the water is shallow and you can still see the socket glinting in the sun.
- The stream is very compact. The bottle and about a 8” radius around it will get wet, but not much farther.
If you repeat this, remember: do it in an area you can clean up. Or where nobody cares if you get it a bit sticky. In other words, where the hose can reach.