• Question: If I took a goldfish into space inside a goldfish bowl and I emptied the goldfish bowl out would the goldfish remain inside the floating water? What would happen to the oxygen in the water aswell?

    Asked by professorofbadgers to Adam, Catherine, Karen, Leila, Nazim on 15 Mar 2012.
    • Photo: Adam Stevens

      Adam Stevens answered on 15 Mar 2012:

      Well, the water would boil away into gas, leaving a very annoyed (and dead) goldfish.

    • Photo: Leila Battison

      Leila Battison answered on 15 Mar 2012:

      Great idea! If a little cruel…

      Being in space is different to just being without gravity, and in space the vacuum would mean that the pressure would be really low, and the water would evaporate into a gas, taking the oxygen with it straight away. The poor goldfish wouldn’t stand a chance!

      But if you did the same thing in zero gravity, but inside a space ship, as long as you were careful not to break up the droplet containing the fish, it might just work! the oxygen would stay in the water then too, because there’s plenty in the air so it doesn’t need to diffuse out.

    • Photo: Karen Masters

      Karen Masters answered on 19 Mar 2012:

      I think if the bowl were large enough while the outer parts boiled off, a layer of ice would also form, and if it were really large it might remain liquid in the centre for a short time. But the end result is either going to be a block of ice with a frozen dead goldfish for a while followed by a dead goldfish and all the water boiled off, or just immediately all the water boiled off.