Science Notes Posts

Stink bombs either contain one smelly chemical or else two that create a stink when mixed together.
Stink bombs are products designed to release a stinky odor. Despite the name, they do not explode. Stink bombs are readily available as pranks, plus there are versions used for crowd control. Here is a look at how stink bombs work, the chemicals involved, and their safety. How Stink Bombs […]

How Do Stink Bombs Work? Are They Safe?

Selaginella or "peacock fern" is an iridescent plant with a turquoise blue shimmer.
Iridescent plants are different colors, depending on the viewing angle. While you may be unfamiliar with iridescence in plants, you’ve seen it in soap bubbles, peacock feathers, CDs, and butterfly wings. Iridescence results from diffraction or when two or more semi-transparent surfaces reflect light and produce an interference pattern. Both […]

Iridescent Plants for Your Home and Garden

The solvent is the part of a chemical solution present in the greatest percent. Solutes dissolve into solvents.
The solvent is the substance that dissolves the solute and the component of a chemical solution present in the greatest amount. While most common solvent are liquids, a solvent can be a solid or gas. The word “solvent” comes from the Latin word “solvō,” which means “to loosen or solve.” […]

What Is a Solvent? Definition and Examples

Diffusion is the movement of molecules from higher to lower concentration. In osmosis, only the solvent (water) is free to move across a semipermeable membrane from higher to lower concentration.
Osmosis and diffusion are two important types of mass transport. Here are the definitions of osmosis and diffusion, examples of each process, and a look at the differences between them. Osmosis and Diffusion Definitions Osmosis – Osmosis is the movement of solvent particles (usually water) across a semipermeable membrane from […]

Osmosis vs Diffusion – Definition and Examples

DNA or deoxyribonuclecic acid is a molecule that encodes genetic information.
DNA or deoxyribonucleic acid is the molecule that codes genetic make-up. Here are 20 interesting and fun facts about DNA: The genetic code in DNA consists of only four building blocks. These are the nucleotides adenine (A), guanine (G), thymine (T), and cytosine (C). The DNA molecule forms a double […]

20 DNA Facts – Fun Facts About DNA

Sodium nitrate is a compound with both ionic and covalent bonds.
Some chemical compounds contain both ionic and covalent bonds. These are ionic compounds that contain polyatomic ions. Often, a compound with both types of bonds contains a metal bonded to an anion of covalently bonded nonmetals. Less often, the cation is polyatomic. The cation isn’t always a metal. Sometimes nonmetals […]

Compounds With Both Ionic and Covalent Bonds   Recently updated !

Separate sand and salt by using the difference in solubility, density, or melting point.
You can separate sand and salt either to obtain the components or to explore separation chemistry. Separation is a method of purification that based on physical or chemical differences between two or more materials. Here are four ways to separate sand and salt and a look at the principles involved. […]

How to Separate Sand and Salt

Examples of Polar and Nonpolar Molecules
Polar and nonpolar molecules are the two broad classes of molecules. Polarity describes the distribution of electrical charge around a molecule. Charge is evenly distributed in a nonpolar molecule, but unevenly distributed in a polar molecule. In other words, a polar molecule has regions of partial charge. Here are examples […]

Polar and Nonpolar Molecules

The independent variable is the factor the researcher controls, while the dependent variable is the one that is measured.
The independent and dependent variables are key to any scientific experiment, but how do you tell them apart? Here are the definitions of independent and dependent variables, examples of each type, and tips for telling them apart and graphing them. Independent Variable The independent variable is the factor the researcher […]

Independent and Dependent Variables Examples

Piranha solution gets its name for its aggressive attack of organic material, like a school of piranha having a feeding frenzy.
Piranha solution is an aqueous mixture of sulfuric acid (H2SO4) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) that is used to remove organic residue from surfaces and make them more hydrophilic. It is also known as piranha etch because another common use is etching circuit boards. Piranha solution is wicked stuff, so read […]

Piranha Solution Preparation, Use, and Safety

This carbon filament is 6 microns in diameter, while it rests on a human hair that is 50 microns thick.
A micron is a unit of length that is one millionth of a meter or 10-6 m. One micron is 1/26,000 of a inch. The micron is also known as a micrometer (American), micrometre (International Bureau of Weights and Measures), or by its abbreviation μm. Usually, the plural form of a […]

What Is a Micron? Definition and Examples

Denatured alcohol is ethanol that has been made unsuitable for drinking.
Denatured alcohol is ethanol (ethyl alcohol or grain alcohol) made unfit for human consumption by adding chemicals called denaturants. It is also called denatured rectified spirit or methylated spirits. In general, denaturing removes a property from a substance without chemically altering it. In the case of denatured alcohol, denaturing makes […]

What Is Denatured Alcohol?

Magnesium burns with a white fire. 2
You can make fire burn with a pure white flame. White is an elusive fire color because the fuel that supports a flame burns with its own characteristic spectrum. But, with a little chemistry know-how, you can get white fire. Here’s how to do it, along with tips to make […]

How to Make White Fire

Ionic and Covalent Bonds
Ionic and covalent bonds are the two main types of chemical bonding. A chemical bond is a link formed between two or more atoms or ions. The main difference between ionic and covalent bonds is how equally the electrons are shared between atoms in the bond. Here is an explanation […]

Ionic vs Covalent Bonds

Epsom salt crystals readily absorb food coloring.
Epsom salt crystals are among the safest and easiest crystals to grow. The natural crystals are clear, but they readily accept dye from food coloring. Here’s what you need to know to grow these crystals yourself. Epsom Salt Crystal Materials All you need is Epsom salt, water, and a bit […]

How to Grow Epsom Salt Crystals

Mercury is the only metal that is a liquid element at room temperature.
Most of the elements of the periodic table are solids, a few are gases, and there are only two liquid elements at room temperature and pressure. A total of six liquid elements exist between room temperature and body temperature. Liquid Elements at 25°C Room temperature is loosely defined as a […]

Liquid Elements on the Periodic Table   Recently updated !

10 Types of Energy
Energy is defined as the ability to do work. There are many different forms of energy. According to the law of conservation of energy, energy may convert to other forms, but is never created or destroyed. Here is a list of 10 common types of energy and examples of each […]

10 Types of Energy and Examples

Melting ice into water is an endothermic reaction.
An endothermic reaction is a chemical reaction that absorbs thermal energy from its surroundings. Because heat is absorbed, endothermic reactions feel cold. The heat absorbed by the reaction provides the activation energy needed for the reaction to occur. More energy is needed to break chemical bonds than is released reforming […]

Endothermic Reactions – Definition and Examples

Scientific names can be long, so most people learn chemical common names.
Chemical names describe a substance’s composition, but we also use common names that are often associated with a property. So, you probably ask for salt at the dinner table instead of sodium chloride. It’s important to remember that common names are inaccurate and vary from one place and time to another. […]

Chemical Common Names and Formulas

Calculators often indicate scientific notation with capital letter E or EE.
Scientific notation is a method of writing very large or very small numbers in decimal form. The method is used by scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. Scientific notation is also called standard form, standard index form, or scientific form. Examples of large numbers written in scientific notation include Avogadro’s number (6.022 […]

Scientific Notation – Working With Exponents

Distilled water is free of minerals.
Distilled water is water purified by condensing water vapor into liquid water. Usually, the distillation process involves boiling impure water and collected the condensed vapor in a fresh container. However, you can obtain distilled water from damp soil, plants, snow, and rain, too. You can distill water to make drinking […]

How to Make Distilled Water – 5 Easy Methods

Metallic microlattice is so light that a dandelion head can support it without being crushed.
Can you name the lightest metal? Most metals are heavy or dense, yet some metals can float on water while others are nearly as light as air. Learn about the lightest elemental metal and the lightest alloy. Lightest Metal That Is an Element When we talk about a material being […]

What Is the Lightest Metal?

Drinking hand sanitizer gel is dangerous.
Some people drink hand sanitizer to get a buzz or get drunk. Kids have been known to lick hand sanitizer off their hands, resulting in a panicked call to Poison Control. How dangerous is it to drink hand sanitizer? What are the risks? What do you do if a child […]

Can You Drink Hand Sanitizer?

Atoms are often considered to be the building blocks of matter because they are the smallest units of chemical elements. These 10 atom facts cover basic information about atoms and some fun facts as well. The word atom comes from the Greek word atomos, which means “undivided” or “uncut.” The […]

10 Interesting Atom Facts

The elephant toothpaste chemistry demonstration produces a steaming tube of foam that erupts like an elephant squeezing a giant tube of toothpaste. The classic demo isn’t appropriate for kids because it uses 30% hydrogen peroxide, but there is a safe, easy version, too. The kid-friendly elephant toothpaste demo uses ordinary […]

Kid-Friendly Elephant Toothpaste Demo