SCIENCE
09/26/2012 11:42 am ET

Liquid Nitrogen & Ping Pong Balls: Explosion Showcased In Classroom VIDEO

What happens when you combine a garbage bin, liquid nitrogen and 1,500 ping pong balls? Before you find out, University of Plymouth chemistry professor Dr. Roy Lowry advises, "have your hands over your ears."

In a YouTube video taken during one of Lowry's classes, the professor places a sealed container of liquid nitrogen in a large trash bin with some warm water at the bottom. He then pours in two large bags of ping pong balls.

After a few moments of suspense, the action happens (at the 3:50 mark in the video). We won't spoil the surprise, but here's the science: the event results from the pressure in the tightly sealed container of liquid nitrogen. Lowry explains: "The liquid [nitrogen] will turn into gas, and the pressure will build up and up and up."

Apparently Lowry has a thing for big booms. In 2006, he held the Guiness world record for the largest number of rockets launched simultaneously, the BBC News reported.

HuffPost

BEFORE YOU GO

PHOTO GALLERY
The Most Bizarre Scientific Experiments

CONVERSATIONS