Posted by **Georgiana** on Wednesday, May 30, 2007 at 4:55pm.

Hi. We did a popcorn popping lab for chemistry and I was wondering if someone could help me with these few questions here:

1) Why is popcorn better stored in the freezer or refrigerator rather than on the shelf at room temperature?

My Answer: I think it has something to do with the water content. If it's at room temperature, then won't the water evaporate?

2) Why must you use oil to pop the kernel? Why would water not work?

My Answer: Hmm...I'm not sure. I think I read that oil and water don't mix and maybe that has something to do with it. Oil and water are both non-volatile... But I don't see anything else...

3) Why is microwave popcorn covered with grease?

My Answer: There's more fat in it?

Thanks!

1) yes, but in either case, it should be tightly sealed. Even in the freezer, some of the water can sublime.

2) Water would evaporate before the popping temperature.

3) a) Grease tastes good, and that means repeat sales.

b) The oil coats the kernels and evenly distributes the heat being generated by the microwave.

1)So, I was right in saying it would evaporate quicker/more at room temp. than in the freezer or refrigerator?

2)Okay, but why wouldn't oil evaporate before the popping temperature?

3)Gotcha thanks.

oil has a higher bp.

So, I was right in saying it would evaporate quicker/more at room temp. than in the freezer or refrigerator?

Also, does the more water the popcorn have mean the faster/better it pops?

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