Why explode an egg? Besides the expected “well, just because we can” answer, there’s actually some interesting science of combustion in the process. Hydrogen needs oxygen to combust, or burn. How it undergoes combustion depends on the amount of oxygen present.
For this demonstration I carefully poked a hole into the top and bottom of an egg and then blew out the inside. It’s kinda a gross process that some of you may have done as a kid before coloring the shells as Easter eggs. Of course you can collect the whites and yoke that squirt out to make a nice omelet as well – no need to waste all that eggy goodness inside.
Once the egg is empty, with a hole on the top and bottom, I filled it with hydrogen gas. Remember that hydrogen is the lightest element and is lighter than air so it will flow out the top of the egg. Adding a flame from a lighter at the top of the egg allows the hydrogen gas to combust with the oxygen in the air to form a tiny flame. A flame that is supplied by a nice flow of gas from the pressure of the hydrogen gas floating upward inside the egg.
As the supply of hydrogen inside the egg decreases, the pressure decreases and the flame begins to descend into the interior of the egg. Of course, keep in mind that at the same time as the hydrogen has been flowing out the top, oxygen and nitrogen from the surrounding air has been filling the egg from the bottom. At some point, the mixture of hydrogen and oxygen gas is just right to form an explosive mixture inside the egg and BOOM! The egg explodes.
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