Science with Shields: Episode #38 – Sink or Float Soda


ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — In this episode of Science with Shields, Christy Shields plays a game of sink or float.

What you need: 

  1. Large tub or container
  2. Diet Soda (unopened can)
  3. Regular Soda (unopened can)
  4. Water


Fill a large tub or container with water. Next, stick the unopened diet soda can into the tub of water. Observe if it sinks or floats. Now, put the unopened regular soda into the water. Does it sink or float?


The diet soda should float on the top of the water, while the regular soda sinks right to the bottom. Even though these two soda cans are the same size, it is the contents inside the cans that make the one sink and the one float. Soda is mainly made up of sugar, air bubbles, and water. While diet soda does not have an sugar in it, it is this high amount of sugar in the regular soda that makes it more dense and sink to the bottom of the container. The diet soda does not have any sugar in it so it floats and is buoyant because of the air bubbles. Try this out with different soda’s and see what sinks and floats!

Check out more Science with Shields episodes on WTAJ Plus.

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