Crazy & Funny

A blog about all crazy and funny things

How to Make Your Own Volcano

If you are reading this, you have probably already done your time in the education system but may need to help your child make their own volcano for a science project. Or perhaps you never had the opportunity or desire to make one of your own while you were in school and feel that you want to experience the marvels of science as an adult. No matter what your motivation is, you will have a blast creating and subsequently, setting off your own volcano. First, lets discuss the scientific principles that encompass an actual volcano.
Volcano Facts and Basics
In order to simplify the explanation, think of volcanoes as similar to mountains that have a hole in the center of their top. When rock is melted in the middle section of the earth, or the mantle, the melted rock will push up towards the earth’s surface in order to release the building pressure. Underneath the volcano, a magma chamber, which is a reservoir of lava, and pent-up gas will erupt from the volcano, causing the molten lava to come down the volcano’s sides. And there you have it–a volcanic eruption.
Although lava flows can create serious damage to surrounding environments and communities as well as cause human and wildlife deaths, there are other threats that coincide with volcanic eruptions. Many times when a volcano explodes, it will create mudslides and rockslides, which can also kill innocent people in its path. And the thick ash from the volcano’s aftermath will damage plants, homes, and injure people.
On the other hand, a volcanic eruption can be beneficial when occurring in ecosystems that are unbalanced. After the volcano completes its destruction, the ecosystem will be in a sense wiped clean and given the opportunity to rebuild in a proper, balanced fashion.
Make Your Own Volcano

Building Your Volcano

Here comes the fun part, the actual creation of the volcano. Begin by using a plywood sheet measuring an extra eight or more inches in width and length that the volcano’s base in order to keep the lava from staining anything important. Take a rinsed-out, 2-liter soda bottle sans the lid, put it on your wooden base, and with the help of salt dough, paper mache, or plaster, create the mountain around it. Packing wads of newspaper between the bottle and mountain material can help shape the volcano. Remember, the opening of the volcano needs to formed tightly around the soda bottle’s mouth.
Next, you will need to make channels and ridges that start at the top of the volcano and travel all the way down to the base. This will give the lava a flowing path. After you do this, you will need to allow your volcano to dry for an entire day and night.
One you have given the volcano enough drying time, apply spray or acrylic paint as well as aquarium plants to add details and foliage for a nice, realistic look. You may then use a sealant to cover the plywood and volcano after the paint has dried.
Now that you have built the actual volcano, you must create the explosion solution. The solution should consist of liquid dish soap and baking soda, both one tablespoon each. This should be mixed with red food coloring.  Once you pour your completed solution into the volcano’s soda bottle, find the perfect spot to set off your volcano, outdoors is usually best.
When you are ready, add 1/4 cup of white vinegar to the solution, back up, and get ready for the volcanic eruption. Always remember that putting the top back on the bottle after adding vinegar will cause an undesired bottle explosion and a huge mess.

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