Saturday Science Sessions – Do the Glowing Dew

This Saturday Science Session experiment was all about the many YouTube videos kicking around of glowing Mountain Dew. While this was the original intent of the experiment, we ended up having more fun playing with Neon in the kitchen sink!

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All you need for the experiment is:

– Bottle of Mountain Dew™
– A Lightstick
– Scissors
– Dishwashing Liquid
– Hydrogen Peroxide
– Baking Soda
– Glass Beaker

– Fill about a quarter of the glass with the Mountain Dew.
– Add about half a teaspoon of the dishwashing liquid.
– Add three caps of hydrogren peroxide.
– Add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda.
– Cut the glowstick open using scissors, and pour the glowstick into the glass with the other ingredients.

You will immediately notice the mixture beginning to glow! However, it is not the Mountain Dew that has any influence on the chemical reaction. It is actually a reaction between the glowstick ingredients and the hydrogren peroxide. Usually a glowstick begins to light up once it is ‘cracked’. Bending the glow stick breaks open a glass module inside the stick, which contains hydrogen peroxide.

The subtle glow is a reaction between the contents of the glowstick (sodium carbonate, luminol, ammonium carbonate, and copper sulfate pentahydrate) with the hydrogren peroxide. So Mountain Dew would not glow if the contents of the Glowstick were not poured into it. Nonetheless, who doesn’t love to play with glow-in-the-dark materials!

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