Humor, Innovation, Media

Diet Coke + Mentos = Fresh Fatfree Fun!

08.12.06 | 5 Comments

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Kevin Sturge sent me a link to the Eepybird’s video (embedded below) showing a Bellagio-like display featuring Diet Coke and Mentos in lieu of traditional fountains. It was hilarious. Apparently I’m one of the last to know about this as the Eepybird video has been seen 6 million times already. A Google search of “Diet Coke Mentos” yields 3.8M results. Heck, it was even on the David Letterman Show. Clearly, I’m late to the party!

The Eepybird Video (101 2 liter bottles of Diet Coke and 523 Mentos)

Want to see this on your iPod? Your iPod Movies has over 100,000,000 files.

Seeing this got me thinking, what causes this reaction? Carbonation? Is there some special ingredient?

Now serendipity steps in, I sit down to watch some TV last night and lo and behold the MythBusters are queued up on my ReplayTV with an episode devoted to, drum roll please, Diet Coke + Mentos! What are they setting out to do?

  • Find out what causes the reaction (just saved me a few hours of tinkering)
  • Compete to see how high they can send a stream of Diet Coke into the air (saved me a few hours of fun)
  • Build a Diet Coke/Mentos powered rocket (you’ll have to watch this to see the results)
  • Discover some more interesting home concoctions (I liked the methane soap bubble trick)

It turns out that Diet Coke and Mentos were made for each other. The carbonation does play a big role, but it doesn’t work alone. I encourage you to watch the MythBusters episode for details.

Spoiler alert (if you are going to watch the episode, stop reading now.)

The active ingredients are: Diet Coke has aspartame (artificial sweetner), caffeine (rush), and phosphoric acid (a preservative) in addition to carbonation that aid in the reaction. Mentos have gelatin, gum arabic, and many, many microscopic nooks and crannies that aid the reaction. The reaction itself is termed as nucleation, that is the extraction of the gas en masse in a short time period which aids the energy release.

Go out and have some fun, try it yourself!

Mythbusters on my iPod? Your iPod Movies has loads of movies, music, and tv shows.

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