In this cooking and food science fair project, you will explore the role of proteins as emulsifying agents. Emulsifying agents are substances that are soluble in both fat and water and enable fat to be uniformly dispersed in water as an emulsion. Foods that consist of such emulsions include butter, margarine, salad dressings, mayonnaise, and ice cream. Emulsifying agents are also used in baking to aid the smooth incorporation of fat into the dough and to keep the baked goods tender. Natural…
You can make a very simple hovercraft with a stiff, disposable plate-a pie plate should work well-and a balloon. Glue a square of cardboard in the center of the bottom of the plate. Make a small hole through the center of both of these layers. Enlarge the hole slightly with a pencil. Push a balloon through the hole so that the opening is on the front side of the plate, and rest of the balloon sticks out from the back. Blow up the balloon, then set the plate down (balloon side up). What…
Disposable diapers contain a polymer, called sodium acrylate, which is useful for absorbing water. Do background research to learn about sodium acrylate, and how it reacts with water. Make sure that you understand the terms hydrophilic, polarity and hydrogen bonding. Cut out the middle, padded section of a disposable diaper. Cut this into equally-sized square pieces, approximately 10-12 cm on a side. Remove some of the stuffing material so that you can staple the open ends closed. …
Have you ever been swimming at the beach and gotten some water in your mouth by mistake? Then you know that the ocean is very salty. But what about other bodies of water? How much salt do they have compared to the ocean?
Global warming is how scientists describe the gradual warming of our global climate. Scientists think that the trend towards global warming can be attributed to the build up of greenhouse gases in the earth's atmosphere from industrialization. Another problem is deforestation, as we remove plants and trees from the environment to meet a high demand for lumber or by clear cutting fields for farming and urbanization. By removing trees from the earth's environment, are we changing how greenhouse…
How much force is required to advance a lag bolt (large wood screw with a hex-shaped head) into a piece of wood? You can measure the force by using a spring scale attached to the handle of ratchet. Pull on the spring scale until the bolt starts to turn, and note the required force from the spring scale. There are many potential experiments you could try. Think about answering the following questions: How does the force change as the bolt advances deeper into the wood? Why? How does the…
What causes landslides? The USGS Landslide Hazards Program conducts research needed to answer major questions related to landslide hazards. Where and when will landslides occur? How big will the landslides be? How fast and how far will they move? What areas will the landslides affect or damage? How frequently do landslides occur in a given locality? Investigate the patterns of landslide occurrence in your area. Are they related to locations, geology, or topography? Are they more frequent…
Fresh whipped cream is the final touch for many delectable desserts. One issue with fresh whipped cream is that it has to be used soon after it is made, especially if it is at room temperature, or it starts to collapse into goo. This is a problem for its use in frostings or inside pastries as filler.
Whipped cream can be stabilized by adding unflavored gelatin. Stabilized whipped cream can be used at room temperature and it has a much longer life. But how much gelatin is just right? Try…
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Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Very Low (under $20)
Adult supervision is required. Whipped cream that has been at room temperature for too long might spoil, so be cautious about eating it if too much time has passed.
Animals respond to chemical cues in different ways. If an animal turns away from a chemical cue, then that chemical is a repellent. If an animal turns toward a chemical cue, then that chemical is an attractant. Attractants and repellents can be airborne chemicals, chemicals found in food, or chemicals that diffuse through water. One example of an airborne chemical is a pheromone, a chemical signal that is released by one individual to attract another. Moths release pheromones to attract…
Here's a project idea for all of you bakers out there. What happens if you try your favorite muffin recipe with different types of flour (e.g., white, whole wheat, rye, soy, etc.)? Think of ways you can measure the results. How would you measure the density of a muffin? A kitchen scale would definitely be useful for this project, both for measuring the results and for portioning out the batter for equal-sized muffins. What other measures might be of interest? (Nakajima, 2005)
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