Doug's Sounding Board


Shrinking bottles

When we were working on the Mpemba effect we needed to boil water. It wasn’t a full kitchen, just a sink, a refrigerator, and a microwave. We also had those 15.7fl.oz. bottles of water. First we dumped out a little and put it in the microwave with the top off and after a short time we saw the water spilling over the top. We quickly stopped it and cleaned up the mess, assuming it was bubbling from the boiling that had pushed it over the edge. What we followed though was the top of the bottle was now smaller.

Of course we had to try it on a whole bottle, so we got a fresh bottle, dumped out about a third of the water and put it in. After a few minutes and a little spilled water, we now had a miniature water bottle. The cap still fit but everything else was smaller. It was shorter and of reduced diameter. Try it! I wouldn’t recommend drinking out of the new smaller bottle though.

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