How Weather Works: Hail on a Hairdryer

Ping pong ball and hair dryer - 'How Weather Works with Brandon Roux'

How Hail Works – Hail on a Hairdryer Experiment
Brought to you by Local 4 Caster Brandon Roux's How Weather Works
Parental guidance is recommended!

Have you ever wondered How Weather Works? The science of weather may be complicated, but Local 4 CASTER Brandon Roux has some experiments to help make learning fun!

What is hail?
Hail is frozen rain inside of a cloud. A thunderstorm cloud breathes in and out, just like you and me! There’s an updraft that takes raindrops to the top of the thunderstorm cloud where they freeze. A downdraft takes them back down, and on their way, those frozen raindrops bang into each other and become a little bit bigger. This happens over and over again, making bigger and bigger pieces, until they get too big and fall down as hail! A lot like counting the rings on a tree, you can count how many times a hail stone went up and back down in a thunderstorm cloud by looking at the hues or shades inside of it.

For a fun simulation, you will need:
-A hairdryer
-A ping pong ball

Turn on the hairdryer and point it toward the ceiling. Grab your ping pong ball and hold it in the air draft coming from your hairdryer, then release! See how many times your ping pong ball can go up and down before it falls to the ground! If your ping pong ball were frozen rain in a thunderstorm cloud, how big would your hail be?