Science Experiment: Chemical Reaction – Plastic Bottle Geyser

Science Experiment: Chemical Reaction – Plastic Bottle Geyser

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A chemical reaction occurs when substances are mixed together and are changed. Sometimes substances mix together and not much happens. Other times the results are pretty dramatic. Today we will look at a chemical reaction. We will mix two substances together. Then we will add a catalyst. Adding a catalyst when you mix two substances together makes the reaction happen faster. It turbo-charges the reaction! Watch the video below for a fun demonstration of a turbo charged chemical reaction. You can probably find the things you need to try this one yourself at home!

What You Need:

  • Plastic Soda Bottle
  • Hydrogen Peroxcide
  • Measuring Cup
  • Dish Soap
  • Food Coloring
  • Dry Yeast
  • Hot Water
  • Funnel

Pour a cup of hydrogen peroxide in the liter soda bottle. Add a few drops of food coloring and a few drops of dish soap. In a separate bowl mix 1 teaspoon of yeast with two tablespoons of hot (not boiling – just use hot water from the faucet) water. Use the funnel to pour the yeast mixture into the mottle. Stand back!!

  • HINT #1 Do this one OUTSIDE!
  • HINT #2 If you want your geyser to spew more, use a plastic soda bottle that is smaller than a liter – a bottle that is smaller will have more foam shoot out of it.

Hydrogen peroxide has a lot of bubbles in it. If you let it sit long enough it will go “flat”. It is just like soda. If you let it sit, the bubbles all pop and eventually no carbonation is left. When you add the yeast to the hydrogen peroxide the yeast makes this “going flat” happen super fast. The yeast breaks the hydrogen peroxide down into oxygen and water which is a chemical reaction. The oxygen combines with the dish soap to make a whole lot of bubbles. In this experiment yeast is a catalyst. A catalyst speeds up a chemical reaction. Once the chemical reaction is over touch the foam – how does it feel? You might notice that the foam is a little bit warm. This chemical reaction is an exothermic one, that means that the chemical reaction produced a little heat. To investigate chemical reactions further – try some more experiments at home!

Websites, Activities, Printables & Databases:

Science in Context: Chemical Reactions is a database you can use in any IndyPL Library Branch or at home. Login using your IndyPL library card number. The Science in Context database will show you articles, images and videos to help you learn about chemical reactions.​



You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.



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6 Responses »

  1. litre (International spelling as used by the International Bureau of Weights and Measures) or liter (American spelling) – both work. 🙂

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