There is a great deal of fake science on the web, and especially on YouTube — shooting this with a big gun, lighting that on fire, and so on. Heck, sometimes it even involves a ping pong ball or two, but we’re rarely amused. That’s because there’s typically zero explanation as to why something is happening, or what scientific principles are at work. At best, these things are like experiments with no hypothesis or conclusion; at worst, they’re just putting some crap in a frying pan and recording it.
But this video, from Tested, the brainchild of Mythbusters Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage, has genuine bona fides. It’s shot with multiple, stationary cameras (not on a GoPro attached to some teenager’s head), and the experiment is performed safely by a qualified person. Moreover, given his concise but thorough explanation, we’re actually learning while watching the video, instead of just laughing because the pumpkin blew up in a funny way.
For the science behind making a ping pong ball travel nearly the speed of sound, check out the video.Get your balls in the game! Donate to the Sean Kimerling Foundation to win the battle against testicular cancer.