Picture this: You’re sitting in your 4th grade science class, waiting for the surprise experiment your teacher promised earlier that week. Out walks a special guest, ice chest in hand. The whole class excitedly waits for what is about to unfold. Everyone is captivated by the mystery substance bubbling as steam pours out and filled the room. It was your favorite science experiment to date. That’s the “magic” of dry ice. Looking back, you probably think that was just a cool experiment, but dry ice plays more roles than just a fun day in school.
What is dry ice?
Dry ice can simply be defined as a solid form of carbon dioxide. It is typically used as a refrigerant, but as mentioned above, it can be used for experiments, enjoyment and more. Unlike regular ice, when heated, dry ice never turns into water. Instead, it immediately turns into a gas in a process called sublimation. Dry ice is typically a safe substance, but since it is much cooler than regular ice, it can easily burn the skin. It is important to take safety precautions, like wearing gloves, while handling it.
What are the common and uncommon uses of dry ice?
- Preserving food and beverages
- Dry ice blasting
- Dermatology practices such as mole removal
- Repairing pipes
- Shipping goods
- Making plants grow faster
- Creating cool effects
Although it may not seem like it, dry ice is not harmful to the environment in any way. This substance never releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, therefore, it does not contribute to the greenhouse effect like one would assume. There is no need to feel guilty when using dry ice. Actually, it should be encouraged to use in daily activities such as cleaning. Dry ice blasting is sustainable because it doesn’t use harmful chemicals and there is no secondary waste being created. Using dry ice for cleaning eliminates the chance of inhaling unsafe chemicals, as well as decreases toxicity in the air.
Next time your child comes home excited to talk about that super cool science experiment, you can get excited knowing that they are being introduced to a sustainable solution. Provide them with the KnowHow to contribute to a clean environment and educate them on all of the awesome properties of dry ice. As for yourself, consider using dry ice next time you ship goods, clean, or host the neighborhood Halloween party- it’s totally worth it!
If you have any questions, comments or concerns feel free to reach out. At nexAir, we are eager to educate our customers and continue to help them Forge Forward!