The Lawrence Hall of Science
The public science center of the University of California, Berkeley.
Wednesday - Sunday
10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
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We partner with school districts to support science learning. We offer district-wide elementary, middle, and high school programs, either virtually or in-person.
We collaborate with a range of partners to innovate in science education. Together, we go further.
In this activity, learners use tonic water to detect ultraviolet (UV) light from the Sun and explore the concept of fluorescence. Learners will compare detectors using tap water and tonic water to observe differences in light from a flashlight and the Sun. Step-by-step instructions are included with photos along with important safety guidelines. This activity needs a sunny day. Activity guide includes a “What’s going on?” explanation and connections to relevant science concepts like the difference in light sources, ultraviolet light, fluorescence, and quinine (a substance sensitive to ultraviolet light).
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Activity Time: 5 minutes
DIY Sun Science Make a UV DetectorPDF
DIY Sun Science Construye un detector de UVPDF
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