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Question:
Why does an orange float with its peel, but sink when the peel is removed?



Replies:
Robert,

Because the inside of the orange is denser than water ;->. It is like a rock wrapped in a life preserver. Take away the life preserver and the rock sinks. Why is the inside of the orange denser than water? Well, it is mostly water (all that good juice!) but the water has dissolved in it a lot of sugar and other flavorful compounds which are heavier than the water molecules that they displace. The result is that the Orange juice weighs more than the same volume of water. Interesting experiment: try floating a diet soda and a soda containing sugar in a bowl of water. Only one of them will float. (Note, my personal observations on this are rather limited but I have always found that the diet soda floats while the other does not.)

gregory r bradburn



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