The summer has gone by in a flash, but there’s still time for one more outdoor science activity that’s quick, easy and has plenty of wow factor to capture your kids’ attention. Many of you may have tried this already at home, the famous diet coke and mentos geyser.
For this experiment all you need is, you guessed it, mentos mint candies and a bottle of diet coke. Now, as for why this eruption happens, it’s mostly due to a process called nucleation where the carbon dioxide in the soda is attracted to the mentos. Because the mentos are covered in tiny holes, the surface area on which the reaction can take place is greatly increased creating the rapid and foamy geyser effect.
A neat experiment is to try dropping mentos in different types of sodas and comparing the resulting reactions. Spoiler alert, you’ll find that diet coke produces the highest geyser as the reaction is accelerated by the aspartame in the soda.
And finally, you’ll probably be wondering what would happen if you ate mentos and then immediately downed a glass of diet coke. We can assure you, the result would not be comfortable and could even be dangerous, so please don’t try that experiment at home!
Check out the ‘volcano’ in action in the video below: