Coke in space
If you have an unopened can of coke in space
and you open it would the coke diffuse into
little beads or stay together? In what direction
would the coke come out of the can?
All that depends a lot on the temperature you are able to keep
the can at. If the can was not being directly lit by the sun, it
would probably get pretty cold, the contents would freeze, and
opening the can would produce just a gradual sublimation of
the contents coming out of the opening at the top. If you can
keep the can pretty close to room temperature, then because there is
quite a bit of pressure (from the carbonation), opening would produce
a burst of stuff (like when you open it down here) and then again
most of the contents would evaporate - in this case you would probably
be left with a deposit of sugar and other goop on the inside
of the can.
And, of course, it also depends upon the ambient air pressure.
This reminds me of the great Coke-Pepsi battle on STS-51F back
in August of 1985. The two softdrink giants both developed hi-tech
dispensers designed to work in zero G. The Coke system worked fairly
well, but the Pepsi system was described as "needing more work" by
payload specialist Loren Acton who tested it. The AWST article was
titled "Coke, Pepsi Fizzle in Shuttle Test"
"Aviation Week & Space Technology" August 19, 1985
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Update: June 2012