CTSC Sundowner

FLOATING PING PONG BALL is a fun activity that you can do with your family at bedtime this evening.

What you need:
● Hairdryer
● Ping pong ball
● Balloon (Optional)

What to do:
● Set the hairdryer to cool, switch it on, and point it at the ceiling.
● Carefully put the ping-pong ball in the stream of air. Hold the hairdryer very steady and watch as the ping-pong ball floats in the stream of air.
● Carefully move the hairdryer from left to right and watch how the ball moves as well, staying in the stream of air.
● Try floating other lightweight objects in the airstream at the same time. With the hairdryer on, place an inflated balloon over your levitating ping-pong ball. You might want to place a penny in the balloon before you blow it up to give it some added weight.

What’s going on?
The air from the hairdryer flows around the outside of the ball and, if you position the ball carefully, the air flows evenly around each side. Gravity pulls the ball down while the pressure below the ball from the moving air forces it upward. This means that all the forces acting on the ball are balanced and the ball hovers in midair.