Do wintergreen Life Savers actually make a spark?

  1. Is this true or some trick?In the news
     
  2. jcsd
  3. If they do, its making me reconsider ever biting into any piece of Life Savers candy (especially wintergreen).
     
  4. Especially while pumping gas.
     
  5. enigma

    enigma 1,815
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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...
     
  6. So its real?
     
  7. enigma

    enigma 1,815
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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.
     
  8. LURCH

    LURCH 2,514
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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.
     
  9. 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.
     
  10. NateTG

    NateTG 2,537
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    You can also get the effect by opening some types of band-aid packages.
     
  11. Ivan Seeking

    Ivan Seeking 12,529
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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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