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National Create a Vacuum Day

A vacuum is an area of space devoid of matter where the gaseous pressure is lower than the atmospheric pressure, and today is dedicated to trying to make one. The word comes from the Latin word "vacuus," meaning "empty." In a perfect vacuum, there are no particles at all, but this is almost impossible to achieve in practice, and only a partial vacuum can be made. The closer a vacuum is to a perfect vacuum, the the lower the gas pressure will be, and the higher the "quality" the vacuum has. High quality vacuum chambers can be made, and are used in physics and engineering. Even higher-quality vacuums can be found in outer space.

Vacuums were not deeply studied until the seventeenth century, and the first lab vacuum was invented by Evangelista Torricelli in 1643. Vacuums are now used on a daily basis as part of industrial and household items. They are used in incandescent light bulbs, vacuum tubes, vacuum pumps, and of course, vacuum cleaners, which usually reduce air pressure by about twenty percent.

How to Observe

There are a few ways to make a vacuum at home, although it is impossible to create a perfect vacuum with household items. A vacuum can be made with a suction cup. When you push it against the wall, the inside will become a vacuum, making it stick to the wall. Another way to create a vacuum at home is with a syringe. Seal the syringe and pull back the plunger, and you'll have yourself a vacuum. A larger vacuum can be created by hooking a container up to the hose attachment of your vacuum cleaner. Speaking of vacuum cleaners, the day could be spent creating one of those as well. All you need is a plastic bottle, a DC motor, and a few household items.

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