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Experiment to ascertain the products of the thermal decomposition of copper (II) oxide.

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Experiment to ascertain the products of the thermal decomposition of copper (II) oxide. Background information Copper carbonate (also known as cupric carbonate) is a compound with the molecular CuCO3 and has a molar mass of 123.5 g/mol. Its boiling point is 200oC, therefore it is a solid at room temperature. It is a blue-green compound often used in artist's paint and some types of make-up. Copper carbonate, CuCO3, thermally decomposes and two reactions could take place: 2CuCO3(s) � Cu2O(s) + 2CO2(g) + 1/2O2(g) CuCO3(s) � CuO(s) + CO2(g) I will be using the moles theorem to calculate, which reaction takes place in the lab. A mole of a solid substance is the mass, which contains the same number of particles as there are in 12g of carbon-12. This number is known as the Avogadro constant, L, which is � 6 x 1023 mol-1. It is important as we can use it to calculate how much of each substance is needed to produce a certain volume or mass of a substance, as I will be doing in this experiment. ...read more.


Variables My independent will be the volume of gas produced during the reaction, as this is what I will be measuring, however I have no dependent variable as there is nothing that I am changing. Calculations Equation 1: 2CuCO3 (s) � CuO (s) + 2CO2 (g) + 1/2O2 (g) * Start with a known volume of gas - 24cm3 of CO2 * Moles (for any gas at room temperature and pressure) = ==> moles of CO2 = = 0.001 moles * The ratio of moles of CO2:O2 is 2:1/2 or 1:1/4, therefore if there is 0.001 moles of CO2 there is 0.00025 moles of O2 * Volume in cm3= moles � 24000 = 0.00025 � 24000 = 6cm3 ==> Volume of gas produced = 6 + 24 = 30cm3 * As 2 moles of CO2 : 2 moles of CuCO3, 0.001 moles of CO2 : 0.001 moles of CuCO3 * Mass of CuCO3 required = moles � Relative Atomic Mass (RAM) ...read more.


It will then be placed inside the boiling tube and the apparatus setup as above. The Bunsen burner will then be lit and switched off once all the copper carbonate has thermally decomposed. I will know the reaction has finished when the gas syringe stops moving out. The gas trapped inside the gas syringe will then be allowed to cool to room temperature (so that the amount of gas can be accurately measured) and the volume measured. This will then be repeated until two results have been collected that are within 0.2 cm3 of each other. I will be careful when handling the copper carbonate as it is harmful if swallowed or inhaled, and I will also need to take precautions, because I am using a Bunsen burner. As a result, I will need to tie my hair back, wear safety glasses and wear a lab coat at all times. Also, I will use a heat proof mat and gauze (so that the equipment doesn't become damaged), and be careful when the Bunsen burner is on, which includes leaving the flame on orange when I am not using it. Furthermore, I will clean my workspace thoroughly afterwards. ...read more.

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