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Brady Smith


The T.W.I.N.K.I.E. Experiment:

Tests With Inorganic Noxious Kakes In Extreme Situations

The Twinkie what exactly is it? This is the question that has plagued many people for nearly a quarter of a century. Appoo the Quickie Mart clerk of the Simpsonís TV show has come forward in saying that "Twinkies are indestructible." So we must ask ourselves exactly what is a Twinkie, and how did a simple little cake receive so much attention. First off all we really know is that the Twinkie is a tasty snack. If we check the box with the list ingredients we can see that the Twinkies are composed of: enriched flour (niacin, iron (ferrous sulfate), thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin), water, sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated vegetable and/or animal shortening (contains one or more of: canola oil, corn oil, cottonseed oil, soybean oil, beef fat), eggs, and dextrose, and also containing no more than 2% of modified food starch, whey, leavenings (sodium acid pyrophosphate, baking soda, monocalcium phosphate), salt, starch, yellow corn flour, corn syrup solids, mono and diglycerides, dextrin, calcium, caseinate, sodium stearoyl, lactylate, cellulose gum, polysorbate 60, wheat gluten, lecithin, flavors (artificial, natural), artificial colors (yellow 5, red 40), caramel color, preservatives (sorbic acid).

What do all these ingredients really tell us? A group of pseudo scientists including my self have composed some experiments that will hopefully bring us to a better understand of what make a Twinkie and how it responds to the environment. For this experiment we will use multiple method of testing in the areas of: gravitational response test, raped oxidation test, radiation test, decomposition test, and a solubility test.

Gravitational Response of a Twinkie


The Materials we will use in this test are:

Gravitational Response of a Twinkie


To test and see the response of the Twinkies to gravitational forces. Before the experiment all the Twinkies were identical in structure. One unwrapped Twinkie was dropped from the fourth floor of the Willard Education Hall building at the University of Delaware. Before the Twinkies could be dropped the hight of the building must have been determined. This was done by dropping a small rock off the side of the building and recorded the amount of time it took to hit the ground. Since the rock had little wind resistance we determined the net force was equal to net mass, and this was the rate at which objects should fall with a gravitational force of . A control Twinkie was left on the edge for comparison purposes. The wrapped Twinkie was dropped from the same spot on the fourth floor. The trails were repeated three times while a third Twinkie was added to the experiment, to see the different effect that a saturated Twinkie would have
Gravitational Response of a Twinkie


As the unwrapped Twinkie fell no notable changes were observed; the same held true for the wrapped Twinkie. After releasing the wrapped and the unwrapped spongy cakes we noticed little difference in the rate of time which it took the Twinkies to fall. After the unwrapped Twinkie fell and hit the ground we observed a medium size fissure on the side of the Twinkie. As the wrapped Twinkie came into contact with the group a loud pop was detected, but there was no noticeable difference from the unwrapped Twinkie. The fissures were identical between the two. The idea was proposed to add a saturated Twinkie to the experiment. To add mass to the Twinkie it was hypothesized to fall at a different rate. It did, the average saturated Twinkie free fall time was 2.5 seconds while the unwrapped and wrapped Twinkie were consistently the same at a rate of 2.8.

Average of three trails Gravitational Response

Unwrapped Twinkie
Wrapped Twinkie
Saturated Twinkie
2.8 sec
2.8 sec
2.5 sec

The as the saturated Twinkie came in contact with the ground a splat was detected. The splat was not as loud as the pop of the wrapped Twinkie, but the actual Twinkie was almost disintegrated. This was an observation quite a noticeable different from the wrapped and unwrapped Twinkie. As expected, there was no change observable from the control Twinkie throughout all the trails.
Gravitational Response of a Twinkie


From the results from this experiment we can tell that Twinkies are effected by gravity. To note, the Twinkie wrapper did not add any protection to the fall. It was hypothesized that the wrapper would have created an air cushion to dissipate the force upon the Twinkie after falling from a lofty height. Although the effects of the impact were less than anticipated for the wrapped and unwrapped Twinkie the effects of gravitational forces on the saturated Twinkie were much more than ever expected. The saturated Twinkie was nearly disintegrated. What can we deduce from this well first off a notable loss of structural integrity was detected after saturation of the Twinkie. Second one must take into account the different rate at which the saturated Twinkie fell. Air resistance must have played a part in the different rates of falling Twinkies. With the rate of 2.8 sec the time it took for the wrapped and unwrapped Twinkies it took to hit the ground, air drag must have built up and reduced the net force. As air drag increases acceleration decreases as the net force is reduced. The saturated Twinkie must have weighed more that the wrapped and unwrapped Twinkie, thus air drag did not built up enough to slow the rate of acceleration and did not reduce the net force greatly upon the Twinkie. This would account for the less amount of time it took the saturated Twinkie compared to the other two. Thus, more net force was applied to the saturated Twinkie than the wrapped and unwrapped Twinkies.