Try this fun chemistry project! If you unwrap a bar of Ivory soap and microwave it, the soap will expand into a foam that is more than six times the size of the original bar. It’s a fun trick that won’t hurt either your microwave or the soap.
Supplies: Ivory soap (yes, only Ivory soap!), microwave safe dish, and a microwave.
Step 1: Unwrap the soap and put in dish.
Step 2: Put in microwave for 2.5 minutes on high. It will start to grow after a few seconds.
Step 3: The soap will get puffy like a cloud but will not be soft to the touch. It’s very dry and brittle!
Two processes occur when you microwave the soap. First, you are heating the soap, which softens it. Second, you are heating the air and water trapped inside the soap, causing the water to vaporize and the air to expand. The expanding gases push on the softened soap, causing it to expand and become a foam. Popping popcorn works in much the same way.
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