• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

An investigation to find out which material reduces heat loss the best way in a time-span of five minutes.

Extracts from this document...


An investigation to find out which material reduces heat loss the best way in a time-span of five minutes


I aim to see which type of material loses the most amount of heat in a time span of 5 minutes.


I predict that foam will be the best material of keeping a drink hot. I think this because of a process called convection, as it has air bubbles that help it to trap the heat. Silver foil will be the best type of material for a lid as it is shiny which will be a bad emitter for radiation.

There are three ways in which heat can be lost. They are convection, conduction and radiation.

 Convection happens only in liquids and gases. An example of convection is in a radiator. The cold air near the floor is heated, and then the hot air rises. The hot air spreads around the room. After, the hot air cools down and drops. This process circulates over and over again. This means that air circulates around the room in convection current.

 The second way in which heat is lost is conduction. This is when heat is passed on from molecule to molecule. This process happens in solids only.

...read more.



For this investigation I will be using a data logger instead of using just a simple thermometer to record the temperature. I will use 5 beakers, all of which with different insulators around it. The insulators will be copper, cotton wool, foam, bubble wrap and silver foil. I will test each beaker one at a time. I will first add 100cm of hot water.  Then I will set up the data logger. I will set it up as the diagram shown below. I will make sure it is on. Then I will go to the option, graph. Then I will choose the menu. I will then go into set-up and into the time span. Each experiment will be set into a time span of 5 minutes. I will then press acorn + S to start recording. I will have to wait 5 minutes for it to record the results. Then I will press Acorn + V to see the values. I will take the readings at every 30seconds. I will repeat these steps for the other types of materials. To make the experiment safe I will have to be careful of the hot water in the kettle and to make sure I do not spill it near the data logger.



...read more.


The accuracy of my work was good enough as our results were perfect.  Whilst doing the materials foam and bubble wrap we experienced two queer looking results. There results were called anomalous. They occurred, as the data logger was not working properly or we did not manage to keep the fair test very fair as we probably opened the lid of the beakers by accident, which then let some hot air out.

I think that the investigation did produce good results but they did not properly prove my prediction. I predicted that the material, foam would be the best type of insulator but you can see from the set of results that silver foil and cotton wool were the two best. I made a mistake as I underestimated cotton wool because I thought that it was to light to be a good insulator.

If I had the chance to do the investigation again I would improve it by keeping the lid on, I would repeat the results again and obtain the readings at different intervals.

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Radioactivity section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Radioactivity essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    As part of my AS physics coursework I went on a trip to Queen ...

    4 star(s)

    Why and When Is UltraSound used In Pregnancy? Ultrasound is considered to be safe and an accurate investigation into the fetus. Diagnosis can be spotted early and confirmation of early pregnancy. Ultrasound can observe and measure the embryo and find the exact date of pregnancy. A visible heartbeat can be seen and detectable by pulsed Doppler ultrasound by about 6weeks.

  2. Do Mobile Phones Cause Brain Tumours

    15- http://www.bbc.co.uk/sn/tvradio/programmes/shouldiworryabout/mobiles.shtml This link is fairly reliable although its details are unclear. The writer is unlisted and no date of last edit is shown. However, from my own judgement, some of the evidence included seems to be accurate and not from another source.

  1. Gamma Rays

    Contrast this with gamma rays, whose wavelengths are sub-atomic in size. Many stars are microwave emitters. Alpha particles: * consists of 2 protons and 2 neutrons (Helium nucleus) * highly ionizing therefore they strongly attract electrons * have a charge of +2 * bent by electric and magnetic fields but

  2. The aim of this study is to find out how harmful sunbeds are for ...

    Other people might want to get a tan, but do not go as the costs of using them are too high see reference leaflet 9. Many other people might not go because of health related problems for example if they are on medication at the time or they have a family history of skin cancer.

  1. Radiation: are mobile phones unsafe? Mobiles use electromagnetic radiation in order to send and ...

    Therefore, this argument is not as reliable as other arguments I have looked at. The reliability is heightened on this however, because this information didn't just come from a 'random' website which isn't known well, it came from the bbc which is news provider for the whole country.

  2. Is sunbathing good for you?

    (Twenty first century science) These are all benefits of ultraviolet light from sunlight, but will only good in moderation. Does ultraviolet light cause any harm? There are different viewpoints from scientists regarding this question. These are two opposing statements. They both support their opinions by either using evidence or just reasons.

  1. Investigate how the material of a cup affects the time it takes for the ...

    53 840 54.5 630 57 630 12 53.5 420 52 420 53.5 420 56 420 13 52 630 51 420 52.5 420 55.5 210 14 50.5 630 50 420 51.5 420 54.5 420 15 49 630 49 420 50.5 420 53.5 420 Conclusion: From my first graph, I can see

  2. My aim is to find out which material is the best insulator out of ...

    After making sure the temperature is 75 degrees then quickly cover it up with foil even the top of the beaker and then start the stop clock. Then you have to measure the temperature in the beaker every two minutes until it goes to 10 minutes.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work