Top 10 Eggsperiments!

Ah, summer is a-coming. I can feel it in the air. Daylight savings time has blessed us all with being able to see where we’re going slightly longer. Daffodils are… where was I… oh right, top ten eggsperiments! Easter has inspired us, but also eggs are actually really interesting and versatile things.

Watch the video to see what we mean. Instructions for the demonstrations are below.

Can you crush a raw egg in one hand?

It seems pretty easy to smash an egg, but eggs are surprisingly strong! Place your egg in a sealable sandwich bag, just in case! Take any rings off your fingers, wrap your fingers and palm around the egg and then squeeeeeeeze! If you apply pressure evenly around the egg then it’s almost impossible to break. Eggs are shaped like a 3 dimensional arch which spreads the force along the whole of the shell, protecting it.


Fresh or Rotten eggs?

As an egg gets older it shrinks inside the shell. The tiny bubble of air in the egg gets less and less dense as there is more and more space for the air to fill. Fresh eggs will sink to the bottom of a glass of cold water, but soon start to bob and then float to the top over a couple of weeks. How fresh are your eggs?


Egg spin.

Here is an eggciting way to spot a hard boiled egg amongst a batch of raw eggs. Spin one egg at a time on a table (on their sides!), and then stop them by quikly dabbing a finger on top of the middle of the spinning egg.

Hard boiled eggs stop because they’re solid, so you stop the outside and the inside stops as well.

Raw eggs will start spinning again as soon as you lift your finger off!  The raw egg has only a solid shell, and a liquid centre. It can therefore keep spinning inside, and give some movement back to the whole egg! If you want lots of people to see this eggcellent demonstration then (with permission!) spin the eggs on top of an overhead projector and watch the funky shadows dance!


Egg into a Bottle, demo 1 on video.

Watch David’s attempt to get an egg into a bottle! Try this with a larger necked bottle which is only a little smaller than your peeled hard boiled egg. First lubricate the mouth of the bottle with some cooking oil. Use tongs to hold a small folded strip of newspaper. Light the paper and then drop it into the bottle. Quickly put the egg on top of the bottle and hopefully marvel as the egg is sucked in! Heating causes the air to expand. The egg should create a seal stopping the flame from getting any more oxygen. When the flame goes out the air inside the bottle cools and contracts. The difference in pressure causes the egg to be sucked into the bottle.


Flipping eggs, demo 2 on video.

(This is one for people who can blow really hard!)

Rest an egg in the top of a shot glass. The best size glass to try this with is one that has a slightly wider top than the egg. Now place your mouth about 5 or 6 cm above the egg and blow as hard and as fast as you can, directly downwards over the top of the egg. If you blow hard and fast enough you can make the egg leap out of the glass, flip over, and land back in the glass!

When you blow hard and fast on top of the egg, this causes the air pressure over the egg to lower very quickly.  But the air pressure inside the shot glass is not affected by your blowing, and so remains higher. The higher air pressure inside the glass now pushes the egg up, and around!

We really hope you are oeuf -er- the moon about this :)


Eggs into Glasses, demo 3 on video.

Watch our video of David attempting to drop not one, not two, but three eggs into glasses! The eggs are sat on top of tubes, on a tray over 3 glasses. What happens when you quickly and sharply knock the tray side on? The tubes are tipped from beneath the eggs so gravity takes over. When you try this experiment don’t forget to put some water into the glasses or things could get very messy! Be careful not to hit the glasses – heavy plastic beakers are a safer option if you are worried about breakages. Finally, make sure the tray isn’t going to hit anybody or anything, except the floor!


Bouncy eggs, demo 4 on video.

Have a go at making your very own bouncy egg! Simply place a raw egg in a small jar, then fill the jar with vinegar until the egg is covered. Place the lid on the jar and wait for 3 days!  After this,you can rinse your egg with water and you should have a bouncy egg!

Try measuring how high it will bounce when you drop it! Vinegar is acidic and it dissolves the calcium in the egg’s shell, so we end up with a rubbery egg. But if your egg goes splat then the yokes on you….. sorry, sorry, trying too hard there.


Egg out of a Bottle, demo 5 on video.

If you successfully have an egg in a bottle from the experiment above then how do you get it out?! Be extra careful trying this one! Tip the bottle so the egg rolls close to the opening. Put your mouth on the mouth of the bottle and blow hard into it. The egg will be pushed out as the high pressure air rushes out. Watch David’s attempt… and don’t choke on the egg or the newspaper!


Which came first the chicken or the egg?

People have debated this conundrum eggsaustively for a long time! So before your intrepid researcher started looking into this, he had a think about it himself. I think the egg must have come first, it just has to have done! So something that was incredibly like (but not quite) a chicken must have laid an egg that hatched into the first ever chicken. And rather amazingly current thinking on this eggstraordinary puzzle seems to back me up :)  But don’t take my word for it have a look for yourself!


Eggs standing to attention:

Try standing an egg upright on a table, balancing it on one end – it’s not easy is it? Ok you can do this by slightly crushing one end of the egg, but in this game we are going to call that cheating.

If you sprinkle a little table salt where you are going to place the egg…. Hey presto! The egg stands up on its own.

Salt crystals are very angular and cube like, so they don’t role out of the way. This makes them a good base for the egg to balance on! We hope you like this one, we were egg over heels about it…. Sorry what’s that… the bad joke police?… Nah, they must have the wrong address.



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Posted in Activity, Chemistry, Exploring Science, Physics
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