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I made ScienceFix.com to share my favorite demos that I do in my middle school science classes.  

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  • Something Funny Happened on the Way to the Moon
    Something Funny Happened on the Way to the Moon
    by Sara Howard
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    NOVA - Origins
    starring Neil Degrasse Tyson
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    Human Body: Pushing the Limits
    starring Bray Poor
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Wednesday
Sep012010

Video Demo: Fire Piston

I bought this fire syringe from the Science Outlet.  The video above shows that when the piston is forced down rapidly, the air molecules compress causing a huge increase in temperature.  This causes the piece of cotton in the syringe to ignite.  This is very similar to what happens with the reentry of the space shuttle into the Earth's atmosphere.

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Reader Comments (1)

Great video! I'll need to purchase one of those for my students! Sometimes it's hard to explain that the an entering shuttle isn't glowing because of friction, but mostly because rapid temperature increase via air compression. Thanks!

1hourparking.com

September 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPatrick

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