Extreme Science: Penny Shine - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Extreme Science

Extreme Science: Penny Shine

Posted:

Join us every Saturday morning for Extreme Science with Radical Rick. This week Rick shows us how to 'shine a penny' with science!

Here's what you need for this experiment:

  1. Several tarnished (dark) pennies
  2. Small plate
  3. Hot sauce or taco sauce
  4. Sink (to rinse pennies)
  5. Electrical tape (optional)
  6. Adult supervision

Procedure:

  1. Place your pennies on your plate.
  2. Pour some taco sauce over your pennies.
  3. Using your finger, gently rub the taco sauce into the penny. Do not lick your hands afterwards as the pennies are filthy and disgusting! Also, be careful if you have any small cuts in your fingers as the taco sauce may irritate it.
  4. Let the pennies sit for 2 – 3 minutes while you wash your hands.
  5. Rinse the pennies off and check out the difference!

What is going on?

There are actually several things that you can use to clean pennies such as lemon juice and salt, vinegar and salt or, your favorite taco sauce! If you took the ingredients of the taco sauce such as tomato paste, vinegar or salt and tried to clean the pennies separately, you wouldn't get them very clean. When salt is dissolved in the vinegar as it is in the taco sauce, the salt breaks down into sodium and chloride ions. The chloride ions will combine with the copper in the penny to remove the tarnish form its surface.

Try this:

  • Try covering half of a penny with some electrical tape prior to cleaning it with the taco sauce. Afterwards, when you remove the tape you can see how much tarnish was actually removed.
  • Try a mixture of vinegar and salt to clean some more pennies. Does this solution work any better than the taco sauce?
  • Try mixing a solution of lemon juice and salt to clean some pennies. How does this solution compare to your previous attempts?
  • Try using different brands of taco sauce. Is there any difference in how well each brand cleans the pennies?
  • Top Stories from KHQTop StoriesMore>>

  • PHOTOS JUST IN: Devastation from Carlton Complex; 300 homes burned

    PHOTOS JUST IN: Devastation from Carlton Complex; 300 homes burned

    Friday, July 25 2014 4:42 PM EDT2014-07-25 20:42:05 GMT
    TWISP, Wash. (AP) - The Okanogan County Sheriff says the Carlton Complex wildfire has many more homes than previously thought. Sheriff Frank Rogers said Friday that the Carlton Complex fire has consumed about 300 homes this month. His office previously placed the number at 150, but he said then he knew it would rise.More >>
    TWISP, Wash. (AP) - The Okanogan County Sheriff says the Carlton Complex wildfire has many more homes than previously thought. Sheriff Frank Rogers said Friday that the Carlton Complex fire has consumed about 300 homes this month. His office previously placed the number at 150, but he said then he knew it would rise.More >>
  • 50 children from Mexican border taken to Oregon; 211 in Washington

    50 children from Mexican border taken to Oregon; 211 in Washington

    Friday, July 25 2014 4:34 PM EDT2014-07-25 20:34:20 GMT
    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Federal officials say 50 immigrant children are being relocated from the Mexican border to Oregon, and Gov. John Kitzhaber says they are welcome. Kitzhaber says the state will continue to welcome children fleeing hardship and violence while waiting for Congress to change immigration policies.More >>
    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Federal officials say 50 immigrant children are being relocated from the Mexican border to Oregon, and Gov. John Kitzhaber says they are welcome. Kitzhaber says the state will continue to welcome children fleeing hardship and violence while waiting for Congress to change immigration policies.
    More >>
  • KHQ Special: 'Behind the Fire Lines' airing Sunday at 6pm

    KHQ Special: 'Behind the Fire Lines' airing Sunday at 6pm

    Friday, July 25 2014 4:25 PM EDT2014-07-25 20:25:03 GMT
    KHQ.COM - For over a week, we've heard hundreds of heartbreaking stories from people who have lost everything, to those who refuse to let the firestorm break their spirits. From communities rallying together, to the heroes on the front lines. Join us for an hour long special, "Beyond the Fire Lines," airing this Sunday at 6pm on KHQ.More >>
    KHQ.COM - For over a week, we've heard hundreds of heartbreaking stories from people who have lost everything, to those who refuse to let the firestorm break their spirits. From communities rallying together, to the heroes on the front lines. Join us for an hour long special, "Beyond the Fire Lines," airing this Sunday at 6pm on KHQ.
    More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KHQ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.