Home School Life Journal From Preschool to High School

Home School Life Journal ........... Ceramics by Katie Bergenholtz
"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Ocean Currents, Part III: Temperature Currents

The set up for this experiment is the same as the last one, so if you have any questions, refer to that one, which I have written in more detail.

Fill one bottle to the very top with hot tap water. Screw the tornado tube onto this bottle. Fill the other bottle almost to the top with icy cold tap water. Add 6 drops of food coloring to the cold bottle and shake well. Finish filling the cold bottle to the very top with more cold water. 

Place the yogurt lid over the top of the cold water bottle. Press down firmly on the yogurt lid, invert the cold water bottle and quickly place it over the opening of the tornado tube attached to the hot water bottle. Carefully slide the yogurt lid away, allowing the two bottles to join together with the tornado tube in between them. Screw the cold water bottle tightly on the tornado tube. Lay the bottles gently on their side on the white dish towel to catch any drips. Tighten the tornado tube if more than a few drops leak from either bottle.

Other than that, do not disturb the bottles at all. Bend down to eye level and observe any movement for at least 5 minutes.

The more dense cold water sinks to the bottom and the less dense hot water floats on the top.
Feel the bottles for differences in temperature. Do you see any other signs of temperature difference, such as condensation?

You can easily feel the layers of water of different temperatures.

Where does the movement of the colored water in the bottles make the water end up?.

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Originally posted Jan 28, 2011


  1. I would think the colored water would end up on the bottom because that's the colder water, and therefore the heavier. That's my theory.

    I am so itching to get some tornado tubes now. Totally forgot to get them earlier this week.

  2. That is seriously the neatest experiment ever!

  3. Anonymous30.1.11

    Fun! We have a tornado tube...I'll have to pull it out this week and try this. Thanks!

  4. What a cool experiment. Now I want a tornado tube. Where do you get them?


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