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snopes
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I like to put a lot of ice in my drinks, and it seems to me that when I put ice into iced tea (of the canned variety) it melts noticeably faster than it does in the same volume of Coca-Cola, even though both drinks were chilled to the same temperature before the ice was added. Am I imagining things, or could some property of soda (such as the carbonation) help it maintain its cooled temperature more efficiently and therefore melt ice less slowly?

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BlackForge
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I would guess it has to do more with the lack of sugar in the ice tea.
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Etienne
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Maybe the specific heat of soda is different than that of iced tea, so that it heats up more slowly, and thus drains less energy from the heat.
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Jason Threadslayer
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Carbonation could make a difference -- fluids retain carbonation better when they're cold.

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uncle jam
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It probably has something to do with the sugars, ala road salt.
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Finite Fourier Alchemy
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quote:
Originally posted by snopes:
Am I imagining things, or could some property of soda (such as the carbonation) help it maintain its cooled temperature more efficiently and therefore melt ice less slowly?

There's no reason that ice needs to melt at any particular rate, so yeah, it's not surprising.

If it's a real effect, I'd guess one possible reason might be that the bubbles from a carbonated drink, settling on the sides and foaming on the top, make insulating layers between the Coke and the sides of the cup, and between the Coke and the air. Keeping the liquid colder longer means keeping the ice solid longer.

Just a guess.

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BlackForge
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quote:
Originally posted by Finite Fourier Alchemy:
quote:
Originally posted by snopes:
Am I imagining things, or could some property of soda (such as the carbonation) help it maintain its cooled temperature more efficiently and therefore melt ice less slowly?

There's no reason that ice needs to melt at any particular rate, so yeah, it's not surprising.

If it's a real effect, I'd guess one possible reason might be that the bubbles from a carbonated drink, settling on the sides and foaming on the top, make insulating layers between the Coke and the sides of the cup, and between the Coke and the air. Keeping the liquid colder longer means keeping the ice solid longer.

Just a guess.

The bubbles also could be said to help the convection curents in the soda and therefor help it warm up.
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Gibbie
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snopes asks:
quote:
I like to put a lot of ice in my drinks, and it seems to me that when I put ice into iced tea (of the canned variety) it melts noticeably faster than it does in the same volume of Coca-Cola, even though both drinks were chilled to the same temperature before the ice was added.
God is punishing you for drinking the abomination that is canned iced tea.

Gibbie

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Dr. Dave
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Ice in liquid winds up in an equilibrium at the freezing temperature of the liquid. In pure ice in pure water at 1 ATM air pressure, that temperature is 32 degrees F or 0 degrees C, also known as the freezing point of water. My point with all of the qualifiers is that the freezing point is different depending on what is in the liquid.

More solute will lower the freezing point. Road salt helps melt ice because it lowers the freezing of water into, say the 20's (F used for the rest of the post- sorry non-US friends.) This is also why road salt is not effective if the temperatures are well below freezing- in the single digits for instance, except for on well travelled roads, etc. etc.

Back to beverages. In this case, the liquid can be cooled to a temperature below 32. So plain ice in a bath of salty water will stay frozn longer as the temperature of the mix is below its freezing point (assuming the ice is made of mearly pure water and the other liquid has more solute.) This is why ice cream makers use a mix of ice and water and salt- the mix is in equillibrium at a lower temperature than 32.

So, your two beverages have different freezing points- determined by the sugar, salt, etc., and yes, carbonation is a solute and a weak acid as well (carbonic acid.)


I do not think it is a bulbbles insulation or convection because the bubbles are not forming a complete gas layer, but bubbles do not assist in convection.

Canned iced tea generally has a lot of sugar and artificial flavor, like soda, unless it's diet. I have not seen unsweetened canned iced tea.

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