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  1. Does Black Bark Mulch Help Keep Moisture in the Soil?
  2. How Much Water does a Fountain Use?
  3. Find your Body Surface Area
  4. How Fast do French Fries Cool Down?
  5. My Year of Coincidences
  6. Which Firework is the Loudest?
  7. Cost to store a VHS tape in a NYC apartment?
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  10. How Much do Clothes Weigh?
  11. Trying to Make Clear Ice
  12. Searching the Indian Ocean for a Plane Crash
  13. Electronic Cigarettes - The Fog Machine for Your Face
  14. Scott Leased an Electric Ford Focus
  15. Testing the Effectiveness of a Beer Cozy
  16. Eggshells vs. Taco Shells
  17. How Ice Rinks are Made
  18. Shaken vs. Stirred
  19. Real Appliance Energy Use Tests
  20. Christmas Lights Power Cost
  21. The Best Cold Drink Cup
  22. LED vs. Regular Bulbs & CFLs
  23. Coldest drink in town?
  24. Using Salt to Cool Down Beer
  25. Coors Light Cold Indicator
  26. The Fastest Way to Cool Down Beer
  27. Hairdryer vs. Bowl of Water
  28. Bathroom During a Movie?
  29. Video Projector on a Disco Ball
  30. Cool Trunk
  31. The weight of popcorn
  32. Sunchips bag decomposition
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  35. Entrance Locked
  36. End Rubbernecking
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  38. Miracle Fruit Taste Test
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  40. Helium Bubbles
  41. Neighborhood Speed Trap
  42. Pizza Race
  43. Eyeclops - Bionic Magnifier
  44. Breathalyzer Testing
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  46. The Value of CFL Bulbs
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  48. Bottling the Keg Leftovers
  49. Spinning Rim Centrifuge
  50. Backwash Experiments
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  53. Balloon Delivery
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  55. Making a Candle Out of Lipstick
  56. Evaporation
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  58. Lard Candle
  59. The Properties of Heat Transfer
  60. Insulation Testing
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  62. Eating In
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  64. Drying Laundry
  65. Viscosity Testing
  66. Magazine Advertising
  67. Collecting Data
  68. Dropping Toast
  69. Refilling an Ink Cartridge
  70. Tampons
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Using Salt and Ice Water to Cool Down Beer

             page 1 | page 2

The stirring vats spun their ice water around, sometimes rattling against the floating beer cans. We waited.

After 10 minutes, Odie checked the temperature of the water vats.

  1. ice water.                      57°F
  2. ice water + salt   between 50 & 62°F, depending on the height of the thermometer in the water
  3. ice water + stir             55°F
  4. ice water + salt + stir   55°F

Stirring and salt seemed to both be having a cooling effect on the water, although the tub with both salt and stirring didn't seem to be experiencing both effects. Also, none of these baths were particularly cold. 55°F is the upper limit of palatable beer temperature.

Ten minutes later, all the ice was melted. The vats with salt hadn't been particularly aggressive at melting the ice cubes. Maybe a half-cup of salt wasn't enough to make a difference in 16 cups of water.

At the twenty minute mark, our thirst could no longer wait. We pulled out the cans. Here are the results:

  1. Beer in ice water.          57.3°F (14°C)
  2. ice water + salt            56.7°F (14°C)
  3. ice water + stir             55.6°F (13°C)
  4. ice water + salt + stir   55.9°F (13°C)
  5. ice cold (10°F) whiskey 43.4°F (6°C)

Round those numbers off and here is the chart you get:

All the ice water tubs had significantly lowered the temperatures of their beer cans. Unfortunately, five cups of ice per vat had not been enough to chill the water and the beer down to a pleasant temperature.

Stirring and adding salt had had a temperature-lowering effect, but it was within a few degrees of regular ice water. I know salt helps lower the melting point (lower than 32°F), but in this experiment, the effect of the salt wasn't very dramatic.

The unrealistic cooling technique was, of course, the most effective. Ice cold whiskey.

The whiskey came out of my freezer, chilled to 10°F. It didn't turn to ice because the alcohol had decreased the freezing point from 32°F to -26°F! The alcohol in the whiskey was highly resistant to freezing, it remained liquid, which enveloped the beer can and was extremely effective at directly changing the temperature of the beer inside the can.

Experiment complete, we celebrated.
We poured ourselves shots of whiskey from the cooling jar and dropped them into awaiting pint glasses of beer.

Neither Odie nor I are big whiskey drinkers, but who can resist drinking a cold beer with shot of refrigerant?


             page 1 | page 2

  The Quest for a solid ice beer tray   Heat Transfer Experiments   Eyeclops Digital Magnifier   Trying to make hot air bubbles   Eyeclops Night Vision goggles   How to Eliminate Rubbernecking   My Homemade Speed Trap 
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