M is for is for Methane Bubbles: Ice and Fire


If you stumbled upon me through the A to Z Blog Challenge, welcome.  If not, check out the challenge and all those participating at their site.


Today I will talk about strange things relating to methane bubbles.

There are some fascinating things that happen when methane bubbles up from the bottom of a lake and that lake freezes.  The images above are from this strange thing that methane bubbles do.  Basically, the water is frozen but the methane bubbles aren’t.  They make some amazing visuals.

You can find more images and some explanations about why this happens in this New York Times article.

The other fascinating thing you can do with methane bubbles is set them on fire.  The article I mentioned above includes a video of someone using the methane bubbles in the frozen lake to ignite a flame on the top of the lake itself.  But if you bubble methane up through soapy water you can make a ridiculously tall tower of bubbles that you can then light on fire for some cool looking effects.  Don’t try this at home, just watch the video of the Mythbusters doing it.

Have you heard of (or done) other interesting things with methane bubbles?  I’d love to hear about them.

Images courtesy of Bering Land Bridge National Reserve (creative commons license) and Wikimedia Commons.


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