Minecraft Wiki

A bubble column is a non-solid block generated by placing magma blocks or soul sand in water (source). Bubble columns push or pull entities and items in certain directions.



In Java Edition, bubble columns cannot be obtained as an item, and can be placed only by a block-placement command such as /setblock.

In Bedrock Edition, it may be obtained as an item via inventory editing, add-ons, or bugs.

Natural generation[]

Bubble columns

Java Edition bubble column. (Click to see the animation)

Whirlpool bubble columns appear naturally when magma blocks generate underwater, in clusters on the floor of aquifers, or as part of ocean ruins and ruined portals generated below the water surface.


When a magma block is placed underwater, a whirlpool bubble column is generated.

When soul sand is placed under source water blocks, an upward bubble column is generated.


Players and air-breathing mobs can enter a bubble column to replenish their air supply, at the same speed that they would when they leave the water entirely. The slower mining speed when underwater, however, still applies to players inside bubble columns. Water-breathing mobs avoid bubble columns because they suffocate if trapped in one. A bubble column is destroyed when moved by a piston. Bubble columns propagate only through water source blocks, stopping at any flowing water or waterlogged block. The height of a bubble column is limited only by the water's surface or by any obstructing blocks underwater.

Bubble columns cannot be created in downward flowing water.[1] This can be circumvented by placing kelp in downward-flowing water, which converts it into a source block.


A whirlpool, or downward bubble column, is the only type that naturally generates in the Overworld, often originating from magma at the bottom of underwater canyons. A whirlpool can be identified by the presence of air bubbles wandering downward. They drag entities downward. A boat ridden over a whirlpool shakes and eventually sinks if kept above the whirlpool for too long.


Upward bubble columns can be identified by the presence of vertically rising air bubbles. An upward bubble column accelerates entities upward; it is impossible to swim downward in one. The longer an object rises through the bubble column, the faster it travels. At high enough speeds, players and entities can be launched out of water by several blocks. Sitting on the surface above a rising bubble column causes entities to bounce upward repeatedly by about 1 block.


In Java Edition, entities move at a speed of approximately 11 blocks per second when in an upward bubble column, or 4.9 blocks per second when in a downward bubble column.

In Bedrock Edition, entities move at a speed of approximately 8 blocks per second when in an upward bubble column, or 6 blocks per second when in a downward bubble column.

Ender pearl stasis chamber[]

Projectiles such as ender pearls are affected by bubble columns. An ender pearl can remain afloat on top of an upward bubble column, allowing it to be stored indefinitely. A mechanism can then be triggered to make the ender pearl hit a solid surface (e.g. by closing a trapdoor), teleporting the thrower back to the setup wherever they are.


Java Edition:

SoundSubtitlesSourceDescriptionResource locationTranslation keyVolumePitchAttenuation
Bubbles popNoneUnused sound event[sound 1]block.bubble_column.bubble_popsubtitles.block.bubble_column.bubble_pop0.11.016
Bubbles flowBlocksRandomly from an upward bubble columnblock.bubble_column.upwards_ambientsubtitles.block.bubble_column.upwards_ambient0.12-0.240.9-1.0516
Bubbles wooshPlayersWhen a player enters an upward bubble columnblock.bubble_column.upwards_insidesubtitles.block.bubble_column.upwards_inside0.71.016
Bubbles whirlBlocksRandomly from a downward bubble columnblock.bubble_column.whirlpool_ambientsubtitles.block.bubble_column.whirlpool_ambient0.12-0.250.9-1.0516
Bubbles zoomPlayersWhen a player enters a downward bubble columnblock.bubble_column.whirlpool_insidesubtitles.block.bubble_column.whirlpool_inside0.71.016

Bedrock Edition:

SoundSourceDescriptionResource locationVolumePitch
BlocksRandomly from an upward bubble columnbubble.up0.4-0.60.9-1.05
BlocksWhen a player enters an upward bubble columnbubble.upinside1.0-1.50.9-1.05
BlocksRandomly from a downward bubble columnbubble.down0.4-0.60.9-1.05
BlocksWhen a player enters a downward bubble columnbubble.downinside1.0-1.50.9-1.05

Data values[]


Java Edition:

NameIdentifierFormTranslation key
Bubble Columnbubble_columnBlockblock.minecraft.bubble_column

Bedrock Edition:

NameIdentifierNumeric ID FormItem ID[i 1]Translation key
Bubble Columnbubble_column415Block & Ungiveable Item[i 2]Identical[i 3]
  1. ID of block's direct item form, which is used in savegame files and addons.
  2. Unavailable with /give command
  3. The block's direct item form has the same id as the block.

Block states[]

See also: Block states

Java Edition:

Name Default value Allowed values Description
Determines whether the bubble column is upward or whirlpool.

Bedrock Edition:

NameMetadata Bits Default value Allowed valuesValues for
Metadata Bits
Determines whether the bubble column is upward or whirlpool.


November 18, 2017Bubble columns were shown in a video clip during MINECON Earth 2017.
Java Edition
1.1318w07aBubble Column JE1 BE1 Added bubble columns.
18w08aBubble columns now generate in underwater ravines.
18w09aBubble columns now generate in underwater ruins.
18w16aBubble columns can no longer be pushed by pistons.
Bedrock Edition
1.5.0beta Column Upwards (non-fancy) BE1 Bubble Column Whirlpool (non-fancy) BE1 Added bubble columns.
beta Column JE1 BE1 Bubble columns can now be toggled to look similar to Java Edition, but only for devices that can handle them.
Legacy Console Edition
TU69 1.76 Patch 38Bubble Column JE1 BE1 Added bubble columns.

Bubble column "item"[]

The following content is transcluded from Technical blocks/Bubble Column.
Bedrock Edition
?Bubble columns exist as an item.


Bedrock Edition
?Bubble Column (inventory) BE Bubble columns use this texture.


Bedrock Edition
  • ? - ?: tile.bubble_column.name


Issues relating to "Bubble Column" are maintained on the bug tracker. Report issues there.


Java Edition[]

Bedrock Edition[]


  1. MCPE-85448 — resolved as "Works As Intended".