Go with the flow
Inject a syringe of chocolate syrup into a PET bottle of lemon Jell-O to make volcanic structures.
Lemon Jell-O, water, refrigerator
chocolate syrup (e.g. Hershey's)
a 1 Liter or smaller plastic bottle with lid (e.g. a water bottle.)
Scissors (to cut the bottom off the plastic bottle.)
A syringe, 50 ml or larger. No needle is needed.
Paper to catch drips.
optional a spoon!
Cut the bottom off the plastic bottles using the scissors.
Screw the top onto the bottle.
The day before the activity make up a double strength batch of lemon Jell-O.
While it is liquid pour it into the plastic bottle. Let it harden in the fridge overnight.
To Do and Notice/ What's Going On?
Take the top off the plastic bottle and turn it upside down.
Fill the syringe with chocolate syrup.
Insert the end of the syringe into the Jell-O in the mouth of the bottle.
(Optional, If you need to, you can use the plastic cap from the syringe to make an injector nozzle extension. Use the scissors to cut the closed end off the syringe cap so that the cap becomes a hollow tube. Then tightly push the cap into the syringe.)
Inject the chocolate syrup into the Jell-O. See image above.
Notice that the Jell-O fractures along planes. Then the chocolate fills the fracture.
This is also what happens in the earth.
A vertical plane of injected molten magma is called a dike when it cools.
If the dike ruptures the surface the chocolate syrup can flow out along the line of the fracture.
On the earth such flows are associated with linear rift zones.
This activity was shown to me first by Modesto Tamez and refined by Trish Mihalek.
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Scientific Explorations with Paul Doherty
6 August 2002