Science Experiments for Kids

Super-Strong Eggshell Arches

Eggshells can be super-strong arches.
Eggshells can be super-strong arches.
©2007, Publications International, Ltd.

Super-strong eggshell arches can hold up a lot more than you think. Even made of eggshells, arches are strong because they exert horizontal as well as vertical force to resist the pressure of heavy loads. Hard to believe? Try it for yourself with this science experiment for kids.

What You'll Need:

  • Four eggs
  • Transparent tape
  • Scissors
  • Telephone books

Step 1: Carefully break off the small ends of the four eggs, and pour out the insides.

Step 2: Wind a piece of transparent tape around the center of each eggshell.

Step 3: Cut through the center of the tape to make four dome-shaped shells. Throw away the broken end of each shell.

Step 4: Lay the four domes on a table, cut sides down, arranged in the shape of a square.

Step 5: Guess how many telephone books you can lay on top of the shells before they break -- and then try it. You'll be surprised how many books the shells can hold!

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