ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — In this episode of Science with Shields, Christy Shields shows you how the ozone layer works.
What you need:
- Knife or Circular Cookie Cutter
- Food coloring
- Paint Brush (Old Makeup Brush)
- Toaster oven or Oven
First, cut with your knife or cookie cutter a circle into your bread. This will be your Earth. Next, take two bowls and pour milk into each one. Then add a few drops of blue food coloring into one of the bowls and mix. In the second bowl, add green food coloring drops and mix. Next, take your paintbrush and paint the earth on your bread where you cut a circle into it. Once you have painted your Earth onto the bread, you’ll want to stick it into the toaster over until it is toasted. You now have Earth toast! Notice how the Earth is not burned, but everywhere else is.
In this science activity the bread represents the Earth. The milk represents the protective layer around Earth, which is the ozone layer. The toaster oven in this activity is like the sun, heating the bread like the sun heats the Earth. Invisible gasses surround Earth. They are a thin layer that protects us and it is called our atmosphere. The atmosphere protects us from the suns harmful rays, extreme temperature swings, and even meteors. In one of the layers, called the stratosphere, is where we find the ozone layer. This ozone layer protects us from the ultraviolet rays from the sun. In recent years, holes have formed in our ozone layer allowing those harmful ultraviolet rays to make it to Earth. These rays can hurt humans and the planet. What caused the damage to the ozone layer are chemicals that we use here on Earth. These chemicals are known as Hydroflourocarbons (HCFCs) and Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). You can find them in aerosols like hairspray, in air conditioners and refrigerators. You can check the back of your aerosol cans to see if they contain these chemicals and it will list them as ingredients. We can do our part to help the planet and repair the ozone layer by trying to stop or limit our use of HCFCs or CFCs.
Check out more Science with Shields episodes on WTAJ Plus.