How to weave a chemical spider web

Such a web would be the envy of any spider!

Warn­ing! Only un­der adult su­per­vi­sion.


  • ace­tone nail pol­ish re­mover;
  • sty­ro­foam.

Step-by-step in­struc­tions

Im­merse a piece of sty­ro­foam in ace­tone nail pol­ish re­mover – it dis­solves com­plete­ly! This cre­ates an ex­treme­ly vis­cous so­lu­tion that eas­i­ly forms threads. They hard­en quick­ly, al­low­ing you to weave a chem­i­cal web out of them.

Process de­scrip­tion

Sty­ro­foam is a foamed poly­styrene, which con­tains a lot of air. When poly­styrene dis­solves, this trapped air is re­leased and the ma­te­ri­al is dras­ti­cal­ly com­pressed. There­fore, it seems like a lot of sty­ro­foam can dis­solve in ace­tone! Poly­styrene mol­e­cules are very long and can cling to each oth­er. This makes its so­lu­tion very vis­cous. But ace­tone evap­o­rates quick­ly, caus­ing the so­lu­tion to hard­en again. This al­lows you to weave a “spi­der web” with threads made of this so­lu­tion. Such a web would be the envy of any real spi­der!

En­joy ex­plor­ing the world with a MEL Sci­ence sub­scrip­tion!!