Why do limes sink and lemons float?

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The term lime is more often used to refer to various kinds of citrus fruits, which appears round in green or yellow color. Limes are found to be in possession of a sour, acidic pulp, known to contain a significant amount of vitamin C. commonly used in accenting flavors in various types of dishes and desserts, limes are widely grown and cultivated at any time of the year and are discovered to be smaller and sweeter compared to lemons. Lemons, on the other hand, are a fruit native to Asia. Typically yellow in color, lemons are widely used in both culinary and non-culinary purposes. Comes in a variety, lemons are acidic in nature, making its distinctive sour taste one of the key ingredients in many dishes over many countries.

Over the years, studies have been conducted comparing limes and lemons. It has been observed that when immersed in water, limes tend to sink while lemons remain afloat. This occurrence has brought many people to query. Science explains that the density of these fruits is the basis for this circumstance to happen. Water has a density of approximately 1 gram per milliliter. The densities of the fruits were obtained and it was reported that the density of lime is 1.12 grams per milliliter while the density of lemon is 1.02 grams per milliliter. Considering this fact, limes are heavier compared to the density of water while lemons almost have the same density with water. Thus, when lime and lemon is put together in water, the former will sink and the latter will float.

With this simple experiment, science can be highly appreciated. More so, its importance to the explanation of the occurrence of certain phenomena can be understood, even when scientific terms are not used.

Author: plaza

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One Response

  1. Robbie Hildred

    January 6, 2015 10:04 am

    We had this question in a pub quiz and queried the answer.
    We put a “pub lime”, as used for their drinks, in a wine cooler full of water … and guess what? It floated!

    So are “pub limes” actually lemons or something different from what is described as a “lime” in this question?


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