This is a great, simple lab to demonstrate the concepts of fermentation. Students are asked the question, "How do sweeteners affect the rate of alcohol fermentation?" Basic materials needed include:
Students collect data over the course of 2 class periods and then are able to discuss "sugar content" through fermentation rates of various sweeteners.
Overview: Fermentation is an anaerobic process in which a cell recycles NADH to provide glycolysis with the necessary NAD+ to make ATP. Alcohol fermentation occurs in few organisms, including yeast (protist) and bacteria. Alcohol fermentation can be utilized to make bread and alcoholic beverages. In this laboratory, you will test the rates of alcoholic fermentation by yeast when combined with different types and amounts of sweeteners, such as table sugar, corn syrup, molasses, honey, fruit juice concentrate (with no added sugar), saccharine, and aspartame.