Make a UV Detector View larger

Make a UV Detector

New activity

Use tonic water to make an ultraviolet light detector!

More details

Open Activity   
How-to Video
Family Take-home Activity

A take-home that can be sent with patrons that wish to do STEM activities at home. These at-home activities cover similar topic areas as the associated activity and could be handed out at the conclusion of a program or left on a circulation desk for patrons to take home.

Suggest a Book

Suggest a book or books below:

Cancel or 

Report Miscategorization

Please let us know how this activity could be categorized better:

Cancel or 



  • Rating 
  • Participants Enjoyed the Activity 
    Participants Learned from This Activity 
    Activity Instructions Were Clear and Easy to Follow 
    Would Recommend 

Related Programming Resources

Related Links Solar Vision
The Electromagnetic Spectrum
Where Does the Sun's Energy Come From? Space Place in a Snap!
Here Comes the Sun: Crash Course Kids
Originating Source Lawrence Hall of Science
Related Books
[Suggest a book]
Light Waves by David A. Adler and Anna Raff
What are Light Waves? by Robin Johnson
The Science of Light Waves by Robin Johnson
The Game of Light by Hervé Tullet
The Sun is Kind of a Big Deal by Nick Seluk
Jump Into Science: Sun by Steve Tomecek and Carla Golembe
Invisible Exposure : the Science of Ultraviolet Rays by Darlene R Stille by Farhana Hossain

Reviews

 
Rating 
Participants Enjoyed the Activity 
Participants Learned from This Activity 
Activity Instructions Were Clear and Easy to Follow 
Would Recommend 
04/23/2018

Probably more effective with a black light

While this is a quick and easy experiment, the results in sunlight weren't spectacular enough to warrant a repeat. It was extremely hard to see any difference in color between tap water and the tonic water. In very bright sunlight, at high altitude (Colorado,) and with the black paper beside them, the tonic water had a very slight bluish-white haze, while the tap water leaned a little more yellowish. With assistance, students saw a minimal difference, but without the extra guidance, I think it would have gone unnoticed.

I think with a UV light in a dark space, the results could be significantly more impressive, and lend themselves to good discussion. Sadly, with the sun alone, it just wasn't convincing enough to elicit conclusions.

Write your review!

Write a review

Make a UV Detector

Make a UV Detector

Use tonic water to make an ultraviolet light detector!