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Do higher Carbon Dioxide levels lead to warmer conditions?

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Do higher Carbon Dioxide levels lead to warmer conditions?

Background information.

Carbon dioxide is a gas that is released with many things, including combustion, respiration, and weathering issues. Carbon dioxide is said to have issues with global warming, as it forms a ‘blanket’ in the atmosphere that slows down the escape of excess heat into space. It does this by absorbing infra red radiation and remitting it as heat. This travels back down to earth and continues the global warming effect.

 We need some atmosphere around the planet so that we can live in comfortable temperatures, but too much heat trapped in the planet causes the globe to heat up and the temperature will be too hot to allow humans to live. It also has direct consequences for the atmosphere around us and around in our habitats.

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As carbon dioxide is classed as a greenhouse gas, I would expect the temperature in the bottle filled with carbon dioxide to be warmer than the one filled with regular air and to cool down slower.


1. Using limestone and acid, produce carbon dioxide and collect it in a bottle. Secure the lid on tightly and insert a temperature probe through the lid.

2. In another bottle, insert another temperature probe, ensuring that there is only ‘normal’ air in it.

3. Record the temperature using a log it system on the computer.

4. Light a lamp underneath the two bottles and record the temperature for ten minutes.

5. Turn the lamp off and continue recording for a further 10 minutes.


This graph shows that both carbon dioxide and air heat up the same amount when exposed to a small amount of heat.

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If I were to do this again, I would keep the lamp on for a longer period of time, for example 2 hours, then turn the lamp off for 2 hours. There would be a wider variety of results from this, which may prove the connection between carbon dioxide and global warming.

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