Tornado in a Bottle Inquiry

Tornado in a Bottle Inquiry

Simple instruments to explore sound and frequency.
Tornado in a Bottle Inquiry
We will use funnels, soda bottles, and a toy called a Tornado Tube to explore the concepts of moment of inertia, rotational motion, angular momentum, kinetic and potential energy, and air pressure in an attempt to discover and explain the physics of a rather complex hydrodynamic system.

Required Equipment
Plastic Funnel, Stopwatch, Vortex Tube, Materials for Designing a Funnel, 2 Empty Soda Bottles, Water Source, Large Tub or Sink.

Acknowledgements: Thank you to Dr. J.R. Harkay author ofPhenomenal Physics for providing this student inquiry activity.Adapted from “Twister! Tornado in a Bottle,” an Inquiry Exercise by J. R. Harkay. See www.PhenomenalPhysics.com for more information on the complete Guided Inquiry Curriculum.


Dr. Russell Harkay
Keene State College
New Hampshire

Download Teacher Notes and Student Worksheets

Horizontal Projectile Ramp with Ball

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