Volcano Science Experiments
Foaming Volcano

Volcano science experiments are fun and fascinating to do. In this easy science experiment you will see how gases can cause lava to foam and froth as they flow out of the vent of a volcano.

Volcano science experiments, Photo by Myrna Martino

Materials

  • Hydrogen peroxide (found in the pharmacy section of a store)
  • Package quick rising yeast (fresh)
  • Small bottle (spice jar size)
  • Straw
  • Pan
  • Cardboard, scissors, tape (optional)

Directions

  1. Place a clean small jar in a pan that will contain the foam that flows out of the volcano.
  2. Pour 1/2 cup of hydrogen peroxide into the jar.
  3. Sprinkle a package of quick rising yeast into the jar.
  4. Begin stirring immediately with a straw. Your volcano will start to foam, froth and hiss as the hydrogen peroxide and yeast are mixed.
  5.  Continue mixing until the volcano stops erupting.

More volcano science experiments 

  1. Create a cone out of cardboard that just covers the jar. Paint the cardboard so it resembles a volcano.
  2. Invite friends over to watch the eruption.
  3. Redo the experiment with the volcano cone over the top of the jar.
  4. Be sure to continue stirring with a straw until the foaming stops.
  5. Try using a larger jar, 1 cup of hydrogen peroxide and 2 packages of quick acting yeast for another experiment.

Science behind the experiment

These Volcano science experiments created a chemical reaction when the hydrogen peroxide and yeast were mixed together. It was a exothermic reaction because the experiment also created heat as it foamed and hissed. Magma in volcanoes that produce pumice begin to foam as they near the Earth's surface during an eruption.

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