JCE 95.06 June 2018 Issue Highlights

The June 2018 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education is now available online to subscribers. Topics featured in this issue include: investigating nanoscopic structures, innovative curriculum, inquiry-based investigations, using games to teach, outreach on climate change and research ethics, instrumental analysis, organic chemistry laboratory experiments, scientific data analysis, chemical education research, from the archives: food dyes.

How Does an Orange Peel Pop a Balloon? Chemistry, of Course!

The juice from an orange peel causes a balloon to pop.  When I first saw this effect I immediately thought to myself, “what is the chemistry involved in this experiment?” After quickly searching the web, I found several claims that a compound in orange peels called limonene (Figure 1) is responsible for this effect.  Limonene is a hydrocarbon, which means that molecules of limonene are composed of only carbon and hydrogen atoms.  Limonene is responsible for the wonderful smell of oranges, and it is a liquid at room temperature.