Density Column

Hi all,

I make one of these every year, showing the densities of various liquids and solids and I thought I'd share it.

I've seen various suggestions for density columns but I wanted to see how they could be improved on, so with a bit of experimenting here is my version:
(I print this off to go with the column).

Density Column 2020-2021 b.jpg

It's pretty easy (and fun) to make and the students always love it. (Sorry the picture doesn't really do it justice).

A couple of suggestions for when you're making it:

- I would suggest lengthening a funnel by attaching a bit of tube to the end (see thumbnail image below) and then use a retort stand, boss & clamp to adjust the height. That way you can minimise the drop distance and reduce disturbance of liquid layers.
- If you use multiple liquids that are similar to each other (like soaps, syrups, oils) test them in a beaker first to check their densities.
- Likewise with the plastics. There is a surprising variety of densities so test them first.
- You'll need to make a new one each year; some liquids will eventually merge and grapes shrivel and popcorn kernels swell.

Density column funnel.jpg
Density Column 2020-2021 a.jpg


  • Density Column 2020-2021 b.jpg
    Density Column 2020-2021 b.jpg
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