For this experiment we are going to prepare and observe three different bottles of water. One bottle filled with water mixed with highlighter dye,one bottle filled with tonic water and one bottle filled with regular tap water. Let’s find out which ones glow.
Do you have any predictions?
Watch the Glowing Water Science Experiment Video
Supplies Needed for the Glowing Water Science Experiment
- 3 Empty Bottles or Drinking Glasses
- Tonic Water
- Black light
Glowing Water Science Experiment Instruction
Step 1 – Prepare the water for the first bottle. To do so, pull the back off a highlighter and drop the ink into a cup of water. Set aside
Step 2 – Prepare the water for the second bottle. Do this by filling the second bottle with tonic water.
Helpful Tip: If you buy tonic water that is already is a clear glass jar, you can just use that.
Step 3 – Prepare the water for the third bottle. Do this by filling the third bottle with regular tap water.
Step 4 – Take the water with the highlighter ink in it that you prepared in step one. Sir the water to mix in the ink and then pour it into the first bottle.
Step 5 – Position the black light behind the bottles.
Step 6 – Turn on the black light and observe the three bottles. Do any of them glow? Do you know why?
How Does the Glowing Water Science Experiment Work
The regular tap water does not glow when placed by a black light.
The water with the highlighter dye in it glows when placed by a black light. This is because the highlighter dye contains phosphors. These phosphors glow when placed by ultra violet light coming from the black light.
The tonic water also glows when it is placed by a black light. It glows because the quinine (the reason tonic water has a bitter taste) glows when placed by the ultra violet light coming from the black light.
I hope you enjoyed the experiment. Here’s some printable instructions.