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

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Introduction

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

Aim:

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

Prediction:

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.

Middle

Plan

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.

Diagram

Apparatus

Conclusion

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.

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

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