In this edition of Weather Labs, meteorologist Austin Evans shows you how to make a cloud in a jar. For this experiment, you will need the following items:

  • A jar
  • A match
  • Warm water
  • A flashlight

Since this involves the use of an open flame, only allow your children to conduct this experiment under the supervision of an adult to prevent injury or property damage.

First, you put some hot water in the bottom of the jar. You don’t need too much. Light the match and let it burn down a little bit. Shake the match out and hold the smoking match in the jar. Drop the match into the jar and close the lid. Smoke and steam will mix and that is your cloud in a jar.

Clouds are simple weather phenomena. They are condensed liquid suspended in the atmosphere and this experiment replicates it in the cheapest way. The steam will mix with the particles in the smoke to allow a thicker cloud.

Open the lid after a little bit and watch the cloud escape the jar.