Physics KS3 / GCSE: How the vacuum of space effects the human body
Dr Kevin Fong uses an audience member from the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures to demonstrate the effect on the human body of going into space without a space suit.
He uses a marshmallow to model the boy’s head, a glass of water to model his stomach contents and a balloon to model his lungs.
These items are placed inside a bell jar, which is then evacuated using a pump.
The marshmallow expands, the balloon bursts and the water boils at its existing temperature of 37 degrees Celsius.
Kevin explains that boiling is not solely caused by increasing temperature.
This clip is from the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures 2015.
You can use this clip to challenge students’ understanding of the process of boiling and how it is affected by pressure.
This clip will be relevant for teaching KS3 and GCSE Physics.
This topic appears in OCR, Edexcel, AQA, WJEC KS4/GCSE in England and Wales, CCEA GCSE in Northern Ireland and SQA National 4/5 in Scotland.