Asked by: Matt Porter, Ipswich
A double fermentation process, known as ‘méthode champenoise’, has been used to create the celebrated sparkling wine since the 17th century. It produces a lot of carbon dioxide, leading to an internal pressure of around 5-6 atmospheres – equivalent to over 5kg of weight on every square centimetre of glass.
That’s too much for conventional wine bottles, so champagne bottles are much thicker and heavier, while their corks have to be held on by wire cages to prevent premature cork popping.
Subscribe to BBC Focus magazine for fascinating new Q&As every month and follow @sciencefocusQA on Twitter for your daily dose of fun science facts.