CAUTION!! Be careful with this!! This experiment uses a knife AND a microwave, so you’re playing with things that slice and gets things hot. If you’re not careful you could cut yourself or burn yourself. Please use care!
We’re going to create the fourth state of matter in your microwave using food. Note – this is NOT the kind of plasma doctors talk about that’s associated with blood. These are two entirely different things that just happen to have the same name. It’s like the word ‘trunk’, which could be either the storage compartment of a car or an elephant’s nose. Make sense?
Plasma is what happens when you add enough energy (often in the form of raising the temperature) to a gas so that the electrons break free and start zinging around on their own. Since electrons have a negative charge, having a bunch of free-riding electrons causes the gas to become electrically charged. This gives some cool properties to the gas. Anytime you have charged particles (like naked electrons) off on their own, they are referred to by scientists as ions. Hopefully this makes the dry textbook definition make more sense now (“Plasma is an ionized gas.”)
So here’s what you need:
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