Instant ice experiments are so much fun in the winter when you can do them outside and even in the summer when you want to cool off! Today’s ice experiment is how to make an instant ice tower.
It’s a fun way to learn about science with just a single ingredient- water!
Follow the directions below for how to make an instant tower and don’t forget to download the lesson guide that goes along with this science experiment to make teaching science easy!
How to Make an Instant Ice Tower
Learn how to make your very own instant ice tower!
Follow along with the step-by-step directions below, but first, read about the science and make sure you have all the supplies you need!
Why Does Instant Ice Work?
Instant ice works with the domino effect of science- nucleation!
What happens is that when a reaction is triggered in one molecule, it is then triggered to occur in other nearby molecules, just like a domino effect.
Another thing that happens with instant ice is because distilled and purified water is impurity-free, the water can cool to below freezing without crystals forming.
But once an impurity is introduced by jostling the bottle or hitting it on a hard surface, that first crystal forms and nucleation begins.
How long does it take to make instant ice?
It varies depending on your freezer’s temperature, but in most cases, it will take anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours to get the water cool enough to make instant ice.
What do you need to make instant ice?
Shop the easy Amazon affiliate links below to get the right kind of water for your ice tower.
Instant Ice Video
Here’s a video of instant ice crystals in action!
Instant Ice Tower Directions
Making an instant ice tower is super easy and a lot of fun. But you do need some patience.
You’ll need purified or distilled water bottles for this experiment to work.
Place a bunch of water bottles in the freezer upright in a place where they won’t get bumped.
If they get bumped, it could ruin the experiment, so be careful!
Set a timer for 30 minutes. Check one bottle to see if it is ready by tapping it on the counter.
If it hardens into crystals, it’s ready! If not, pop it back in the freezer and come back in another 30 minutes.
In our freezer, it usually takes about 90 minutes to get to the ice tower stage.
Get a bowl or plate and put some ice cubes on it.
When the water is ready, slowly pour it over the ice cubes. An instant ice tower will form!
The water warms up really quickly so you can only make a tower for a few seconds.
But if you have more bottles you can repeat the experiment again. You can also return the bottles to the freezer and start over.
More Ice Science Experiments
Can You Burn Ice? Burning Ice Experiment (not for young kids!)
How to Make an Ice Magnifying Glass (start a fire with ice?!)
How to Make Instant Ice in 5 Seconds