Fun Science Egg In A Bottle Partial Vacuum Experiment

A science classic that never fails to amaze! Seemingly defy the laws of physics with the Egg in a Bottle experiment. 

You will need:

  • A pealed hard boiled egg
  • A wide mouthed glass bottle (the mouth should not be wide enough that the egg will fall through it though)
  • A match/lighter
  • A strip of scrap paper

 

Method:

  • Light the strip of paper and carefully drop it into the bottle
  • Place the egg on the mouth of the bottle
  • Watch carefully – the paper should stop burning and then the egg will start to slip into the bottle.

The Science Bit:

The burning piece of paper heats the molecules of air in the bottle which makes them spread out. Some of the heated molecules actually escape out past the egg that is resting on the mouth of the bottle (that’s why the egg wiggles on top of the bottle).

When the flame goes out, the molecules of air in the bottle cool down and move closer together. This is what scientists refer to as a partial vacuum. Normally the air outside the bottle would come rushing in to fill the bottle but the egg is in the way! The “push” or pressure of the air molecules outside the bottle trying to get in is so great that it literally pushes the egg into the bottle.