Cartesian Diver

Amaze your scholars with an activity that uses a Cartesian diver to demonstrate Pascal's Law, Archimedes' Principle, and the Ideal Gas Law. Groups then repeat the process and make their own diver move up and down in a bottle.

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CCSS: Designed
NGSS: Designed
Instructional Ideas

  • Invite a scuba diver to come to the class and talk about diving and achieving neutral buoyancy
  • Build your own Cartesian diver using a plastic pipette and try it in different types of fluids
Classroom Considerations

  • The class should be familiar with Pascal's Law, Archimedes' Principle, density, and the Ideal Gas Law

  • The resource includes directions on how to make a homemade alternative
  • Activity extensions provide opportunities to expand the use of the Cartesian divers

  • None
Common Core