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Key ConceptsPhysicsGasPressureVolumeBoyle"s Law

IntroductionYou have actually probably opened a soda before and had the liquid fizz ideal up the end of the bottle, creating a huge mess. Why does that happen? It has to do through the carbon dioxide gas the is added to the fluid to do it fizzy. Opened the bottle releases the built-up press inside, leading to the gas-liquid mixture to rush the end the bottle. In this activity you will demonstrate—with the help of air- and also water-filled balloons—how a gas transforms volume depending upon its pressure.

You are watching: Explain how pumping air into a bicycle tire increases the pressure within the tire

BackgroundThe difference between solids, liquids and gases is exactly how the particles (molecules or atoms) behave. Particles in solids are usually tightly packed in a constant pattern. Return the particles in a liquid are additionally close together, they room able to relocate freely. Gas particles, however, are widely spread out out and also occupy numerous space. They continue to infect any room that is available. This method that in comparison to liquids and also solids, the volume the a gas is no fixed. Robert Boyle, a chemist and physicist native the 17th century, discovered that the volume the gas, an interpretation how much space it occupies, is related to its pressure—and angry versa. He found that if friend pressurize a gas, the volume contracts. If friend decrease its pressure, the volume increases.

You have the right to observe a real-life applications of Boyle"s legislation when girlfriend fill your bike tires v air. When you pump air right into a tire, the gas molecules inside the tire acquire compressed and packed closer together. This rises the push of the gas, and it starts to push against the wall surfaces of the tire. You can feel exactly how the tire becomes pressurized and tighter. Another example is a soda bottle. To gain carbon dioxide gas into the liquid, the totality bottle is generally pressurized with gas. As lengthy as the bottle is closed, that is really hard to squeeze, together the gas is confined to a tiny space and also pushes against the bottle"s walls. Once you remove the cap, however, the easily accessible volume increases and also some of the gas escapes. In ~ the same time its pressure decreases.

One essential demonstration of Boyle"s legislation is our very own breathing. Inhaling and exhaling basically way increasing and decreasing the volume of our chest cavity. This creates short pressure and also high press in our lungs, causing air obtaining sucked into our lungs and leaving our lungs. In this task you will create your own demonstration that Boyle"s law.


At the very least two small balloons such as water balloonsLarge plastic syringe (approximately 60 milliliters functions well), such as a children"s oral medication syringe (available at most drug stores). Ensure the it is airtight and also does not have actually a needle.ScissorsWater


Use the syringe to to fill one balloon with a tiny bit of air—so that the balloon will certainly still fit inside of the syringe. Tie turn off the balloon and also trim any extra balloon material past the knot.Fill the syringe through water.Use the syringe to fill another balloon with few of the water, making it the same size as the air-filled balloon. Tie that is opening with a knot, and also trim any type of remaining product after the knot.Remove the plunger from the syringe so that it is open on the big end.

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Place the air-filled balloon just inside the huge opening in ~ the ago of the syringe. Insert the plunger right into the syringe, and shot to press the balloon right into the guideline of the syringe. How difficult is it to push the plunger in? What happens to the air inside the syringe?Pull the plunger back again, and also move the balloon into the center of the syringe. Climate close the front opening (the tip) that the syringe through one finger, and push the plunger into the syringe again. What do you notice? just how does the balloon look or adjust when you push the plunger in?Release her finger indigenous the reminder of the syringe. Place the balloon right into the guideline of the syringe, and push the plunger into the syringe until it touch the balloon. Climate close the pointer of the syringe with your finger and also pull the plunger all the means back. Does the balloon form change? If yes, how? can you define why?Replace the air-filled balloon within the syringe v the water-filled balloon. Then ar the plunger right into the syringe. Close the reminder of the syringe with your finger, and push the plunger right into the syringe as far as friend can. How walk the balloon readjust this time?Release your finger indigenous the reminder of the syringe, and also push the plunger every the way into the syringe till it touch the balloon at the tip of the syringe. Climate close the pointer of the syringe again with your finger, and try to traction the plunger earlier as far as you can. What wake up to the water-filled balloon? Does it behave in different way than the air-filled balloon? If yes, how and why?Extra: usage the very same setup, yet this time add water to your syringe in addition to the air-filled and water-filled balloons. Climate close the pointer of the syringe and shot to press the plunger right into the syringe and also pull it out again. What wake up this time? exactly how does the water within the syringe do a difference?

Observations and ResultsDid you check out the air inside the air-filled balloon contract and expand? there is no closing the tip of the syringe with your finger, friend can quickly push top top the plunger. The air have the right to escape through the opening at the guideline of the syringe. But when girlfriend close the syringe v your finger the wait can"t escape anymore. If you push on the plunger, you boost the press of the air and thus the waiting in the balloon contract or reduce its volume. You should have seen the air-filled balloon shrivel up and get smaller in size. The opposite happens once you near the opened of the syringe and pull the plunger back. This time girlfriend decrease the pressure of the air within the syringe—and the volume increases. As a an outcome the air-filled balloon expands and grows in size: a perfect show of Boyle"s law!

The results look various with the water-filled balloon. Return you space compressing the air within the syringe as soon as pressing ~ above the plunger, the water within the balloon walk not get compressed. The balloon continues to be the same size. The water balloon additionally keeps the shape once pulling out the plunger if closing the tip of the syringe. In contrast to gases, liquids are not compressible together their particles space already very close together. Boyle"s regulation only uses to gases.

If you filled the syringe with water together well, you should still have seen the air-filled balloon shrinking while pushing the plunger into the syringe. The air-filled balloon likewise should have expanded when pulling the plunger out while the reminder of the syringe was closed. You could have noticed, though, that you were not able come push and also pull the plunger in and out as much as you can with the air-filled syringe. This is again due to the fact that of the truth that liquids can not be compressed choose gases. Girlfriend should have observed that additionally when do the efforts to press the plunger in or pull it earlier in the water-filled syringe through the water-filled balloon. It was probably difficult to move the plunger in and also out!

More to ExploreBoyle"s Law, indigenous NASAThe ABC"s the Gas: Avogadro, Boyle, Charles, native TED-EdPuffing up Marshmallows, from Scientific AmericanHow do We Breathe?, from Scientific AmericanSTEM tasks for Kids, from scientific research Buddies