Watch the mesmerizing spectacle of whipped cream in a vacuum

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The delightful YouTube series The King Of Random answers questions from readers through various science experiments, like a homemade perpetual vortex fountain, or northern lights in a jar. Yesterday, the series posted a video about what happens when you put whipped cream or whipped egg whites into a vacuum chamber. Once you suck the air out, does the substance revert back to what it was originally?

In most cases, the answer is pretty much “yes,” as the chamber de-pressurizes. But before that, our host expanded the cream in the chamber, which, as he explains, “expands any air inside the blob.” Adding food coloring to make his experiment even more mesmerizing, he notes that whipped cream might be “the most expansive thing they’ve ever put in the vacuum chamber,” besting even a previous attempt at cake batter.

Then the host uses the chamber to suck the air out of the cream, eventually reverting it to pretty much its original consistency, stopping at a pretty, lacy substance level along the way. The eggs were a bit less palatable, but still recognizable as egg whites.


The hypnotizing effect of this experiment brought up many inspired suggestions in the comments for other vacuum chamber experiments for the series: cotton candy, carbonated water or soda, soapy water, dry ice, slime, marshmallows. Since we don’t have a vacuum chamber ourselves, we too would appreciate it if The King Of Random could get on this next round of experiments as soon as possible.

Gwen Ihnat is the Editorial Coordinator for The A.V. Club.

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Burners Baby Burners: Discussion Inferno

Dagnabit, I’m trying to get work done, stop tempting me with 12 minutes of something that has no direct impact on my life yet I absolutely cannot look away from!!!