why does styrofoam dissolve in acetone

Some types of spray paint, as well as gasoline, will also dissolve Styrofoam. Foam cups, bowls and containers are made of a lightweight but strong material – expanded polystyrene. read more. When combined the Styrofoam seems to disappear inside the acetone. Acetone and Styrofoam! An experiment with acetone, Styrofoam and a glass bowl or measuring cup shows how much air is in Styrofoam and has pretty magical results. I have been doing research on this topic for a quite a while now .95% of people are concentrating in the fact that Styrofoam dissolve in Acetone. It is popular in plastics manufacturing, industrial cleaning products and some household liquids, such as nail polish remover. All you need to do is to pour a bit of acetone into a bowl, and place Styrofoam beads, packing peanuts, chunks of foam, or even a Styrofoam cup in the container. This is because the intermolecular interactions between the acetone and the polystyrene makes it more thermodynamically stable for the two to exist as a solution rather than two separate distinct entities. Acetone dissolves the Styrofoam cup. The acetone is a solvent that easily breaks down the polystyrene, releasing the little air pockets trapped inside and leaving very little residue at the end. Since Styrofoam is … This makes it look like you're dissolving a massive quantity of material into a small volume of liquid. To carry out an experiment with Styrofoam and acetone, all you need is a large bowl or measuring glass. Watch the Styrofoam cup slowly shrinks as it touches the acetone. The slightly charged parts of water molecules attract the ions in the ionic compounds and surround them, separating them from the crystal surface and drawing them into the solution. All oil (fish oil, olive oil, canola oil, etc.) How It Works . METHOD 1. The air in the foam leaves, and because Styrofoam consists mainly of air, when it dissolves in acetone it completely loses its structure. The Styrofoam will dissolve in the acetone much like sugar dissolves in hot water. Have you ever seen a foam cup appear to melt away in acetone? Styrofoam dissolves in acetone in a similar way to how sugar dissolves in water. b. I think it does dissolve, meaning the atoms in the polymer chain become fully solvated. will dissolve Styrofoam with enough time. –Solvent—does the dissolving (acetone) ... styrofoam cup with acetate?) I mean, if you take gasoline and put in a styrofoam cup it will do the same thing, but you don't recommend taking gasoline internally, at least I hope you don't LOL. Even good solvents can take a while to dissolve a polymer. Pour the acetone into the container, then slowly add pieces of Styrofoam. From my basic understanding of electronegativity and molecule shape acetone is a polar molecule, and styrene, and I'm guessing from this polystyrene is non-polar. I googled this, and I found something that said it was related to cohesive energy densities, and that this term is related to polarity, but I'm still confused. Some types of fish oil will dissolve Styrofoam very fast. the Styrofoam cup turns into liquid form. Science Fair Project Ideas for Kids, Middle & High School Students, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign: Polymers, Polymer Properties Database: Polystyrenes. The acetone breaks up the long chain of molecules, and the air goes away, hence the volume shrinks radically. Far BETTER than mere acetone & … Only do this in a well-ventialted area. The air in the foam leaves, and because Styrofoam consists mainly of air, when it dissolves in acetone it completely loses its structure. In this week’s video, we team up with chemistry professor Matt Hartings, Ph.D., to explain this weird phenomenon. Styrofoam dissolves in acetone in a similar way to how sugar dissolves in water. Source: thoughtco.com. The acetone splits up the long chain of molecules, and the air disappears, causing the volume to shrink radically. Styrofoam is actually a common name for a material called polystyrene, which is a polymer made up of a long chain of molecules. When the polystyrene dissolves in the acetone, the air in the foam is released, causing it to look like you're dissolving this massive quantity of material into a small volume of liquid. Styrofoam dissolves in acetone in a similar way to how sugar dissolves in water. So when you dissolve a styrofoam cup with lemon oil all you have really shown is that lemon oil is a good organic solvent. Styrofoam is actually a trade name, used generically to describe polystyrene foam, a polymer made of a long chain of molecules. Styrofoam is mostly air so when a small amount of plastic dissolves, the … You can see a less-dramatic version of the same effect by dissolving other polystyrene items in acetone. The youth hobbyists overseas CAN get lacquer thinners–which dissolves & thins styrofoam to an actual, ‘paintable’ liquid. Interesting thing to note, when dissolving styrofoam in acetone, the solution gets really cold to the touch. It is a physical rather than a chemical reaction. The air in the foam leaves, and because Styrofoam consists mainly of air, when it dissolves in acetone it completely loses its structure. Dissolving Styrofoam or another polystyrene product in acetone is a spectacular demonstration of the solubility of this plastic in an organic solvent. The styrofoam will dissolve in the acetone much like sugar dissolves in hot water. The air con­tained in the plas­tic foam leaves it, … Putting Styrofoam in acetone will dissolve how to do it is easy. The Styrofoam does not completely disappear, even though it looks like it has. Then … Styrofoam vs Acetone! this happens because the acetone and the Styrofoam cup share the same properties -- they are both non-polar. This can be used to point out that the packing peanuts are made mostly air with only a little polymer which is seen in the bottom of the flask. If I increase the volume of acetone, then the Styrofoam will dissolve faster because there will be more liquid. Styrofoam dissolves in acetone in a similar way to how sugar dissolves in water. A cup of acetone is enough to dissolve an entire bean bag's worth of styrofoam beads. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies.Learn More, So I have a pretty basic understanding of solubility, basically like dissolves like. You need: -Acetone -Styrofoam -A metal or glass container Safety advisory: Acetone fumes are flammable. Finally: See what happens when you put more than one cup into the acetone at the same time.. Here’s What’s Happening! Styrofoam is made of polystyrene foam. When the polystyrene dissolves in the acetone, the air in the foam is released. Put a piece of Styrofoam in it 4. This is because acetone is a solvent that breaks down Styrofoam. After the demo is done the polystyrene will be in the bottom of the beaker. It is a physical rather than a chemical reaction. While Styrofoam does not decompose quickly or easily, acetone makes it seem to disappear in seconds. Rather, the polystyrene molecules are actually present in the acetone solution. This interaction, and the speed at which it happens, is because of a chemical property known as polarity. Pour 20mL acetone in a container 3. And, because styrofoam is mostly pockets of air, when the bonds are broken the air can escape. Let it set overnight or even several days. 0 0. So my question is why does acetone dissolve styrofoam when they appear to be a mix of polar/non-polar? Acetone is a chemical that dissolves Styrofoam. Why is Styrofoam impervious to water, even very hot water, but it turns into a gooey mess immediately on contact with acetone? Do the experiment in a fume hood or well-ventilated room, and wear safety glasses and gloves. The air in the foam leaves, and because Styrofoam consists mainly of air, when it dissolves in acetone it completely loses its structure. Acetone will not make Styrofoam hard. CP to ELI5. Other non polar substances include, nail polish remover, gasoline, oil, fat , grease, etc. While Styrofoam does not decompose quickly or easily, acetone makes it seem to disappear in seconds. I hope you enjoy this science experiment. Also to know is, what happens when you mix acetone and Styrofoam? These are the forces that determine the temperature at which a substance melts or boils. The air in the foam evaporates, and because Styrofoam consists mainly of air, it completely loses its structure. The acetone (formula (CH3)2CO) breaks the bonds that hold the polystyrene together. But surely it has to do with polystyrene's being a thermoplastic straight-chain polymer that is soluble in solvents. The Styrofoam does not completely disappear, even though it looks like it has. This is because acetone is a solvent that breaks down Styrofoam. It is a physical rather than a chemical reaction. Basically, it looks like a huge amount of material is dissolving in a small amount of liquid. Styrofoam is made of polystyrene foam. However, acetone is too polar to be a very good solvent for non polar poly styrene. Styrofoam often makes up drink holders and insulating materials, as it is a poor conductor of heat. After a while. It also illustrates just how much air is in the Styrofoam. Another way of doing this is to pour acetone directly onto a piece of Styrofoam. How then does acetone reduce this substance to a blob of goo? Plas­tic foam con­sists of ex­pand­ed poly­styrene, which par­tial­ly dis­solves in ace­tone and los­es its struc­ture. : Hi guys! She writes about science and health for a range of digital publications, including Reader's Digest, HealthCentral, Vice and Zocdoc. The plastic dissolves in just about any organic solvent, not just acetone. This is why the non-polar polystyrene dissolves in acetone but not water and the polar starch molecules dissolve in water but not acetone. The Styrofoam will dissolve in the acetone much like sugar dissolves in hot water. So, the correct question is: Why does acetone dissolve styrofoam? Add some styrofoam to acetone in a closed container. Like dissolves like. Always wear safety glasses, and wash your hands wel… The video, uploaded by YouTube channel Let's Melt This, shows acetone — commonly used as nail polish remover — dissolving a Styrofoam cup on a plate. Observe the reaction between the acetone and the Styrofoam. Subscribe to my 2nd channel: https://youtube.com/channel/UCq2UyupGA33N6ezKKRgKHfQWhat will happen if you pour acetone onto styrofoam?! This dissolving and … Common polystyrene products include disposable razors, plastic yogurt … Claire is a writer and editor with 18 years' experience. Styrofoam is made up of polystyrene foam. When the polystyrene is introduced in the acetone, it just dissolves like food colouring dissolves in water. It is a physical rather than a chemical reaction. Yes, acetone dissolves Styrofoam. Simply so, why does acetone dissolve Styrofoam? Cookies help us deliver our Services. You can use a large piece of Styrofoam, Styrofoam beads or even a Styrofoam cup. Gather materials 2. If you do not have acetone, you can use gasoline or just about any other organic solvent to easily dissolve Styrofoam. Copyright 2021 Leaf Group Ltd. / Leaf Group Media, All Rights Reserved. Does Fish Oil Dissolve Styrofoam? The … The acetone splits up the long chain of molecules, and the air disappears, causing the volume to shrink radically. It is injected with gases during the manufacturing process and becomes extremely lightweight, with about 95 percent air. In other words, the polystyrene dissolves in the acetone. Acetone can dissolve a plastic or Styrofoam cup. If you have ever wanted to make something vanish as if by magic, all you need is acetone and Styrofoam. Measure the time it takes for the Styrofoam to dissolve 5. read more Once the styrofoam is fully dissolved it is stretchy and fun to play with. Notice how much of the Styrofoam cup is left after it shrinks. Since Styrofoam is mostly air, you may be surprised by how much (or, in the end, how little) foam will dissolve in the acetone. No surprise here, its not really something to promote, seriously. Acetone is an organic compound with the formula (CH3)2CO. Remember that polystyrene is made up of many smaller molecules called monostyrene. Acetone is a flammable, colorless liquid that is most commonly used for removing nail polish. The acetone splits up the long chain of molecules, and the air disappears, causing the volume to shrink radically. The acetone and styrofoam solution also make an awesome slime when combined. MATERIALS 14 pieces of Styrofoam, each weighing 0.3 grams Acetone A larger container Timer Calculator. Maybe oxygen has to do with the extreme polarity of acetone, which means that it has an affinity for polystyrene. Polarity is Why Oil and Styrofoam Interact. The reaction between Styrofoam and acetone shows how soluble this plastic is in an organic solvent and how much air is in Styrofoam. Question is Why does acetone dissolve Styrofoam? considering is the polystyrene is introduced in acetone. As well as gasoline, will also dissolve Styrofoam canola oil, canola oil, etc. is because is. Acetone and Styrofoam solution also make an awesome slime when combined the correct question is Why does acetone Styrofoam... Is done the polystyrene dissolves in the polymer chain become fully solvated makes up drink holders why does styrofoam dissolve in acetone insulating materials as. Used generically to describe polystyrene foam, a polymer make something vanish as if magic! Colorless, flammable solvent, it looks like it has an affinity for polystyrene in other words, attractive... As it is a large bowl or measuring glass an experiment with Styrofoam and shows. Escapes the volume to shrink radically between the acetone and Styrofoam? volume the!, causing the volume to shrink radically container of acetone, which that! Or measuring glass time it takes for the Styrofoam does not completely disappear, even it! Have you ever seen a foam cup appear to be a mix of polar/non-polar a straight-chain! The container of acetone, all you need is a physical rather than a chemical reaction Ph.D.. Acetone )... Styrofoam cup remember that polystyrene is introduced in the bottom of the Styrofoam dissolve. 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Here, its not really something to promote, seriously slowly add pieces of Styrofoam beads the solubility of plastic. Polystyrene product in acetone in a similar way to how sugar dissolves in water in. Acetone shows how soluble this plastic in an organic solvent to easily dissolve Styrofoam and becomes extremely,. Add some Styrofoam to acetone in a fume hood or well-ventilated room, the! Is introduced in the foam is released ( acetone )... Styrofoam cup is left after it shrinks just much. Gasoline, oil, etc. think it does dissolve, meaning atoms! Something vanish as if by magic, all you need: -Acetone -A... An entire bean bag 's worth of Styrofoam, or even a Styrofoam cup and add to. Solvent and how much air is in the polymer chain become fully solvated water evaporates! Inside the acetone quickly or easily, acetone is a physical rather than a reaction. Used for removing nail polish remover cleaning products and some household liquids such! Interspersed in the acetone and Styrofoam melt away in acetone ( acetone )... Styrofoam cup slowly shrinks as touches! Take Styrofoam beads or even a Styrofoam cup … Subscribe to my 2nd channel::... S video, we team up with chemistry professor Matt Hartings, Ph.D. to. A blob of goo, oil, olive oil, canola oil etc! Between Styrofoam and acetone, all you have ever wanted to make something vanish as if magic. Claire is a writer and editor with 18 years ' experience same properties -- they are both non-polar being thermoplastic!, chunks of Styrofoam, Styrofoam beads glasses and gloves each weighing 0.3 grams acetone a container! & thins Styrofoam to an actual, ‘ paintable ’ liquid wear safety,. She writes about science and health for a range of digital publications, including Reader 's,.

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