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Find out how magnesium ribbon reacts with various chlorides.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Compare the reactivity of the Transition Metals with the elements in Group 2. This investigation aims to find out how magnesium ribbon reacts with various chlorides including zinc chloride, iron chloride, copper chloride, nickel chloride and cobalt chloride, as compared to the reactivity of the elements in group two. All the elements that combine with the chloride ions to form the compounds are transition metals. Reactivity series. The reactivity series is a list of metals in order of reactivity with the most reactive metal at the top of the list and steadily decreasing reactivity down the list. The list is as follows: Potassium K Sodium Na Calcium Ca Magnesium Mg Aluminium Al Zinc Zn Iron Fe Lead Pb Copper Cu Mercury Hg Silver Ag Platinum Pt Note: this list could be shorter or longer depending upon the number of metals you wish to consider. As I have mentioned above, all the elements that have been combined with the chloride ions to form the chloride compounds are transition metals. This means that the reactions that will take place may not be in any obvious order e.g. in order of reactivity, thus I will have to investigate and find out in what order they will react. Transition Metals. Transition metals have the following properties in common: - > The metals have higher melting points, boiling points and densities than group 1 metals > The metals are usually strong and shiny. > They are good conductors of heat and electricity (just like other metals). > Some of these metals have strong magnetic properties. > Transition metals often form more than one positive ion. > Transition metal compounds are often coloured e.g. copper chloride is blue. > Transition metals and transition metal compounds are often good catalysts e.g. nickel is the catalyst used to turn oils into fats for making margarine, and iron is the catalyst used in the Haber process for making ammonia. ...read more.

Middle

The following diagram shows how the apparatus was set up:- A fair experiment is one in which there is only one independent variable which is manipulated to observe its effect on the dependant variable. Thus, fair testing plays an important role in this experiment as it would in any other. A fair test provides accurate and valid results such that I would be able to draw concrete conclusions from. All the measurements carried out will have to be as precise and accurate as possible so as to avoid attaining anomalous results: > A clean and empty flask was used to put the chloride compounds in. > All the test tubes used were clean and contained no residue. I also checked that none of the test tubes were broken or cracked, as this will have an effect on the results obtained. > I made sure that all of the test tubes that I used were of equal size so that when I measured how much of the chloride solution had been displaced, I got the correct volumes. > The amount of chloride solution displaced was measured to the nearest millimetre using a ruler > A sensitive balance was used to weigh the magnesium strips separately to the nearest 2 decimal places. I also made sure there was no dirt or water on the balance before use, because even the smallest things could affect the results. > I made sure that the magnesium strip was swiftly removed as soon as the time was up so that whilst measuring how much solution had been displaced, the magnesium strip wasn't still reacting. > It was important to make sure that all the magnesium strips were of the same size and mass using an accurate ruler (nearest mm) and sensitive balance (2 decimal places). This is because if there were more magnesium in one of the experiments it would react faster and cause anomalous results, as there is a bigger surface area that can be reacted. ...read more.

Conclusion

This would affect our results because when there is even a little bit more magnesium in any one of the experiments the reaction is likely to be faster because there is a larger surface area of the magnesium being reacted. Another problem associated with the magnesium strips was when they came out from the test tubes. We were forced to keep the test tubes slightly elevated and this allowed the magnesium to slip out. Also not all of the gas was collected in the test tubes. Undoubtedly some of the gas was lost outside the test tube. Ag gas syringe would have ensured that near enough most of the gas was collected. Precision and accuracy was lost when the given time had elapsed and we struggled to remove the magnesium strip in time. The extra few seconds that it was reacting could have been crucial if we are considering the speed at which the iron was reacting. Once again this problem could have been counteracted by the use of a gas syringe. The moment the time elapses the rubber bung can either be undone or the gas pipe blocked. Thus resulting in much more concrete results. We faced a problem with contamination of the solutions as we were forced to use the same solution over and over again. The contamination is likely to have affected our results because they were remnants from previous experiments in them. All of the solutions were meant to be of the same strength i.e. 0.25M but we are not 100% sure of this and so this could have affected our results. Finally, having done this experiment on the reactivity of transition metals, a further area of interest would be in the variety of the colours produced when transition metals react as they are noted to form coloured oxides. www.bbc.co.uk www.encarta.msn.co.uk www.s-cool.co.uk www.webelements.com Chemistry revision guides by coordination publications Letts GCSE Chemistry study guide. Letts AS level study guide. Nuffield Advanced Chemistry by Longman. 5 ...read more.

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