DIY Science Experiment #8 - pH Indicator!
There are many instances where you stumble upon items in your closet and kitchen, not sure whether they are acidic or basic. With this PH indicator, you will be able to tell the difference and learn more about what separates these two categories.
- Red cabbage
- Clear glasses
- Test liquids (vinegar, lemon juice, ammonia, detergent)
- Peel off six red cabbage leaves and place them in the blender with 12 cups of water. Use the ratio of one cabbage leaf for every 2 cups of water. Blend until its liquefies.
- Pour the liquid through a strainer. It will be very dark purple in color and can stain clothing, so be aware. This strained liquid will help you detect acids and bases!
- Pour equal amounts of the liquid into separate glass containers. Now, add your testing liquids to each glass.
- If your pH indicator turns red, it means that the testing liquid is an acid. If it turns green, it means that it is a base. If there is no color change, then the liquid is in between.
So, how does it work?
This pH stuff might sound confusing, but its a way that scientists measure the acidic and basic properties of substances. This measurement scale ranges from 0-14. Substances with a low pH (below 7) are considered acids. Anything with a pH of 7, like water, is considered neutral. Substances with a pH greater than 7 are considered basic. Acids tend to be sour and bases tend to be bitter. The cabbage is able to detect these properties because it has a water soluble pigment called anthocyanin, which changes color once it comes in contact with an acid or base. Be sure to test a variety of beverages at home and have fun!
Sources:Steve Spangler Science