The Challenge: Make an underwater flashlight
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With access only to
a basic tool kit, some reels of wire, pots and pans, rusting kitchen equipment
and a car battery would we be able to make a light at all, let alone a
flashlight that worked underwater?
Whether using fire, electricity or even a chemical reaction, you are essentially
doing the same thing: giving atoms energy and getting them 'excited'.
The energy absorbed by the atoms is taken up by the electrons
that surround an atom's nucleus. The energy carries the electrons further
away from the nucleus than normal and the atom is in an 'excited' state.
When the electrons fall back to their ground state, closer to the nucleus,
energy is radiated away again.
Electrons can give
off different kinds of electromagnetic radiation when they fall back to
state but we're particularly interested in getting them to emit radiation
within the visible spectrum.
Exciting the atoms