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Release Energy from Candy 

In this science experiment, we walk through how to release energy from candy using Potassium Chlorate. Using gummy bears, skittles, and other common candy treats, we learn that the amount of energy stored in a substance can be surprising! To use this experiment for a science fair project, consider questions like: Does the consistency of the candy impact the amount of energy it contains? Which candies contain the most energy compared to others?

 

PROCEDURES

SAFETY NOTE: Due to the nature of this experiment, it is best performed in a lab with a scientist or science educator. Because potassium chlorate is a strong oxidizing agent, we advise performing this experiment behind a blast shield or in a fume hood. Keep a fire extinguisher on hand throughout this experiment.

1. Melt powdered potassium chlorate in a test tube using a Bunsen burner or butane torch. 

2. Carefully drop a gummy bear or other piece of candy into the liquid potassium chlorate.

WARNING: BE VERY CAREFUL. WEAR SAFETY GOGGLES AND GLOVES AT ALL TIMES.THE SUBSTANCE IS VERY REACTIVE AND DANGEROUS.

3. Observe the violent combustion reaction. Do not attempt to put out the flames. The reaction should cease within a few minutes, depending on the candy used. 

MATERIALS

  • potassium chlorate

  • test tube + stand

  • candy, such as gummy bears and skittles

  • safety goggles

  • safety gloves

  • fire extnguisher

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