Scoop: Q and A science fair

Using nails, soda and water a fifth grader at North Grove Elementary School won first overall at the school science fair.

Gracelyn Owens describes her project and where she got the idea.

What is your project?

To find the oxidation rate of nails in liquids.

How did you do that?

I got a bunch of different liquids and put nails in them to see which ones rusted the fastest. I used Coke, Pepsi, Fanta, Sprite, Sierra Mist, water, vinegar and Mountain Dew Kickstarter.

How did you get the idea?

My grandma had the idea. It sounded interesting, and I wanted to see how it would turn out.

How long was the experiment?

A week. I lined up cups on my dresser and observed them every morning when I got up.

What did you find?

When I took the nail out of the Sierra Mist, it was black. Water rusted the nail the most and there were orange flakes in the cup.

What surprised you about the results?

It was kind of interesting to me that water rusted it the most. I thought it would be an acid, not something we drink every day.

How did you decide on the liquids?

I wanted to do a bunch of different ones that were from both Pepsi and Coke.

What was the hardest part of the project?

Typing it all up and putting the board together.

What do you think set your project apart?

I had packets and I typed up all the ingredients of every drink.

Did you consider another project?

I thought about doing something on the solar system, but I wanted a lot of items to display.

Compiled by Magen Kritsch,

Author photo
Magen Kritsch is an editorial assistant at the Daily Journal. She can be reached at or 317-736-2770.