Do wintergreen Life Savers actually make a spark?

  • Thread starter ptex
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  • #1
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Is this true or some trick?In the news
 

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  • #2
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If they do, its making me reconsider ever biting into any piece of Life Savers candy (especially wintergreen).
 
  • #3
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Especially while pumping gas.
 
  • #4
enigma
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I didn't know this was news. My friends and I discovered it at camp over a decade ago. I guess we should have written a report and submitted it for national fame...
 
  • #5
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So its real?
 
  • #6
enigma
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Oh yeah. Try it yourself. Go into the bathroom. Put a lifesaver in your mouth. Turn the light off. Look in the mirror, and chew with your mouth open.
 
  • #7
LURCH
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As I understand it, the crystals in the Wint-o-Green LifeSavers TM discharge a piezoelectric spark. This in tern is amplified by interaction with the sugar molecules.
 
  • #8
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I read about that and tried it last summer, nothing happened. Though I also read that if it weren't ridiculously dark and very dry it wouldn't work. Thoguh I don't see how external humidity would matter at all, since the second you put it in your mouth it gets really damn humid.
 
  • #9
NateTG
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You can also get the effect by opening some types of band-aid packages.
 
  • #10
Ivan Seeking
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As my poor mother will tell you, if you use a pair of plyers instead of biting the LS it is much easier to see. The down side: Our bathroom had Wintergreen LS pieces in every corner and crevice. Obviously this approach quickly lends itself to making as big a spark as possible using many lifesavers at once. :rolleyes:

Sci Am had a write up on this years ago.
 

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