Vibrating pennies conduction science experiment
In this science experiment, we’ll use a bottle and a penny to demonstrate the physics of conduction – the transmission of heat from one thing to another.
Take a bottle with a narrow opening. The opening should be just about the size of a penny.
- Dip a penny in a bowl of ice water. Hold the neck of the bottle in the ice water for a few seconds too.
- Place the penny over the mouth of the jar.
- Place some oil around the bottle opening or on the penny in order to provide a completely airtight seal.
- Now hold the bottle in your hands and carefully observe the penny. It should begin bouncing around. Rubbing the bottle will increase the heat even more.
Remember – heat causes things to expand (or get larger). Cold causes things to contract (or get smaller). The heat from your hands is transferred through conduction to the air in the bottle warming the air. This causes the air molecules to move faster which makes the penny jump. As this happens the pressure in the bottle increases, forcing the penny upward. A little bit of the air escapes and the penny falls back down. Then the heat generates more pressure, and the process continues causing the penny to repeatedly lift and fall on the mouth of the bottle.
Vibrating pennies conduction science experiment advanced notes
Conduction is the transmission of something through a medium or passage – in this case, the transmission of heat from your hands to the air in the bottle. Conduction is a process of heat transfer that occurs in solids, liquids, and gases. In this process, heat is transferred from a region of higher temperature to a region of lower temperature by direct contact between the two regions. The molecules in the hotter region have more kinetic energy and vibrate more rapidly, colliding with neighboring molecules and transferring some of their energy to them. This process continues until the energy is evenly distributed throughout the material.
In solids, conduction occurs through the transfer of energy from one molecule to another through lattice vibrations. In liquids and gases, conduction occurs through the transfer of energy from one molecule to another through collisions.
The rate of heat transfer through conduction depends on the thermal conductivity of the material, which is a measure of how easily heat can flow through the material. Materials with high thermal conductivity, such as metals, transfer heat more easily than materials with low thermal conductivity, such as plastics.
Required supplies for the Vibrating pennies conduction science experiment
Supplies: Penney, Glass bottle