Air pressure concepts explained visually

See flying toilet paper, shooting smoke vortex rings, exploding balloon dogs, tea bag rockets and much more!

Students will find out all about air pressure in this fun science show with strong curriculum links.

Concepts covered:

As this show is primarily about pressure and air it can be tailored to demonstrate how weather works or how planes fly; just let us know which area you would like us to cover on booking this science show.

When presented as a show on the weather:
  • What is air pressure? Why are low and high-pressure areas important?
  • How are clouds formed? What is our atmosphere made of anyway?
  • What conditions are needed to cause tornados?
  • What causes drought and how can scientists help?

Students will gain an appreciation of meteorology and gain insight into how our climate operates.
Stage 1 students can attend, however, in such cases it would best run over 40 minutes due to their limited attention spans.

When presented as a show on flight:
  • How do pressure differences relate to flight?
  • What is the Coanda effect and how is this important for the design of plane wings?
  • Specifically, the show demonstrations are designed so that students will understand 4 basic forces acting on flying objects; lift, thrust, drag, and gravity.

Show Demonstrations

Air vorticesShooting compressed air rings over the class – discussion on pressure
Bernoulli balloonsTry to blow the balloons apart – explains how air acts on surfaces
Bernoulli ballsFloat balls in mid-air, relating curved surfaces to wing design
The impossible puffWhy is it hard to blow a ping pong ball out of a funnel?
Flying toilet paperDemonstration on how the Coanda effect helps planes to fly
Flying saucerFind out how thrust, drag, gravity, and lift affect plane performance
Tea bag rocketHot air rises. So, what about cold air?
Crushing CansHow powerful is atmospheric pressure?
Magdeburg hemispheresWitness the classic experiment that demonstrated air pressure.
Cream expansionWhat happens to air bubbles in low-pressure environments?
Exploding balloon dogWhy does the balloon dog pop in a vacuum?
Drink boiling waterDemonstration on what boiling really means.
Dry ice columnHow is acid rain formed? Why is it bad for the environment?
Laser sightsHow are lasers used in atmospheric research?
Cloud in a bottleHow are clouds formed? Learn to read weather maps on the news.
Tornado tubesMake a tornado in a bottle.

 

Curriculum