What Are Some Dry Ice Tricks?

dry-ice-tricks Credit: Yamada Taro/The Image Bank/Getty Images

The simplest dry ice trick involves adding the ice to water - a thick fog forms as the ice sublimates. Adding dish soap to the container traps carbon dioxide gas in bubbles that soon overflow the container. Breaking a handful of bubbles releases a cloud of fog and blowing soap bubbles over the top of a container of dry ice and water creates bubbles that float on a cushion of carbon dioxide.

Dry ice is an excellent tool for learning and teaching about sublimation and the properties of gases as well as for creating homemade carbonated beverages. It is the solid form of carbon dioxide and is colder than ice made from water. Dry ice is cold enough to burn skin, so caution should be exercised when handling it.

Adding dry ice to a pot or pan of fruit juice creates homemade carbonated juice. Dry ice should only be added to an open container of liquid because the escaping gas could build pressure and rupture a closed vessel. Including dry ice in a serving container could burn the drinker.

Homemade dry ice can be obtained by using a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher. To accomplish this, experimenters should duct-tape the opening of a cloth bag around the nozzle of the fire extinguisher while wearing heavy gloves and discharge the fire extinguisher. As a result, dry ice forms inside the bag.