How to make hydrogen balloons

We are all familiar with the traditional helium balloons, which can easily fly. There is a very interesting alternative to create this type of balloon without the need for helium. The gas we can use is hydrogen, a gas that we can synthesise. Next, we will see how to make hydrogen balloons in a homemade and simple way.

Hydrogen balloon


- 1 L glass or crystal bottle.

- 2 L plastic bottle.

- Thin plastic tubing of a similar gauge to butane gas transport tubing.

- Salfumán.

- Water.

- Silver foil.

- Glass container.

- Rubber balloon.

Hydrogen creation process

This experiment should be carried out in an open-air site where gases are not concentrated, because although the amounts of reagents are very small, precautions should be taken.

Hydrogen Extractor

Take the glass bottle and place it inside the glass container. Place water inside the glass container, covering about three quarters of the glass bottle.

Next, we connect the glass bottle with the plastic bottle, using the plastic tube. To avoid leaks, we can use adhesive tape or silicone to prevent gas leaks between the two bottles.

Before sealing the plastic bottle, we place a tube that comes out of the bottle and remains free. With this tube, we will fill the balloons with hydrogen.

Before sealing the glass bottle, we put some salfumán inside the bottle and some silver foil. The amounts will depend on how the reaction takes place, so these can be calculated by trial and error.

Now, we place a rubber balloon at the free end and wait for it to fill with hydrogen.

hydrogen balloon

How it works

The chemical reaction that takes place inside the glass bottle gives off hydrogen which is sent into the balloon, thanks to the apparatus we have created. As hydrogen is lighter than air, it will lift the balloon easily, as if it were helium.

10 thoughts on “Cómo hacer globos con hidrógeno”

  1. Hydrogen is very flammable, be careful! And it is explosive even in low concentrations, do not play with it if you do not have the basic knowledge, the flow of flames produced by hydrogen can reach 5000 degrees Celsius. Good luck with that....

  2. Hydrogen is not explosive and is so light that it rises vertically in the atmosphere, and the Hindemburg fire was curiously due to the aluminium cladding on the exterior. The aluminium burned with the help of the hydrogen, not the other way round.
    Rocket engines carry hydrogen and oxygen in liquid form.

  3. what is the glass bottle immersed in the glass container for?
    Does the reaction get too hot?

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