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Investigate one of the factors which effects the speed at which acid rain dissolves limestone.

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Investigation - Factors which effect the speed of reaction between acid rain and limestone Aim - To investigate one of the factors which effects the speed at which acid rain dissolves limestone. Prediction Acid rain causes damage to building stones e.g. marble and limestone, by causing them to crumble and dissolve. Because it is not possible to use this actual situation in an experiment, I will simulate this situation on a smaller scale using marble chips and dilute hydrochloric acid. The equation for the reaction that occurs is- Calcium Carbonate + Hydrochloric acid --> Calcium chloride + Water + Carbon dioxide CaCO3 (s) + 2HCl (aq) --> CaCl2 (aq) + H20 (L) + CO2 (g) The factors which effect the speed of this reaction are * Volume of acid / Limestone * Surface area of Limestone * Temperature of acid * Concentration of acid. Temperature and Concentration of acid are two factors I could investigate which would provide me with accurate results, from which I could draw sensible conclusions. I know this from previous experiments. It is not practical to investigate the surface area of limestone, as the surface area cannot be accurately measured. There is no catalyst available for this reaction. I have not done any preliminary experiments relating to the volume of limestone or acid. I have chosen to investigate the effect of the concentration of acid on the rate of the reaction. I have chosen this because it is possible to be more accurate than if I was investigating temperature. ...read more.


It is important to keep the surface area constant because there are more collisions per second if there is a greater surface area. If I used chips with a large surface area, the speed of the reaction would increase. By keeping temperature, volume of reactants, and surface area of marble constant, my test will be accurate. Results Time 2M acid 1.6M acid 1.2M acid 0.8M acid 0.4M acid 0M acid In Seconds Co2 produced in Cm3 Co2 produced in Cm3 Co2 produced in Cm3 5 10 5 4 1 0 0 10 15 9 6 1 0 0 15 21 13 8 1 1 0 20 26 16 10 2 2 0 25 33 21 12 2 2 0 30 39 24 14 2 3 0 35 45 28 16 3 3 0 40 51 32 19 3 4 0 45 58 35 21 4 4 0 50 64 39 24 4 4 0 55 70 43 26 5 4 0 60 75 47 28 6 5 0 65 83 50 31 7 6 0 70 88 54 33 8 7 0 75 91 58 35 9 7 0 80 95 61 38 10 8 0 85 100 65 40 11 9 0 90 -------- 68 42 12 10 0 95 -------- 71 45 13 10 0 100 -------- 75 47 14 11 0 105 -------- 78 49 15 12 0 110 -------- 82 52 16 13 0 115 -------- 84 54 17 14 0 120 -------- 86 57 18 14 0 Accuracy - I have measured the volume of acid, water, and CO2 to the nearest cm3. ...read more.


Before any CO2 is seen in the gas syringe, it must saturate in the acid. This can make it appear as if the reaction begins very slowly, especially in the slow reactions. Some of my graphs appear to jump between readings. This is because sometime the piston in the gas syringe gets stuck until enough pressure builds up behind it, forcing it to jump out quickly. My final graph showed the results I expected, yet there were 2 anomalies. At a concentration of 0.8M the rate of reaction was much slower than I predicted. Looking at the graph showing just the rate of reaction at 0.8M, I can see that the reaction began very slowly. This is because it took a long time for the acid to become saturated with CO2. This makes the reaction appear much slower than it really was. At a concentration of 1.6M the reaction appears to be much faster than I expected. This could be because of a rise in temperature of the acid. At a higher temperature, there are a higher proportion of successful collisions, and so the rate of reaction increases. To further this investigation, I would extend my range of concentration of acid, to find out if my theory that if the concentration of acid doubles, the speed of reaction doubles is still correct at much stronger acids. I would also test the rate of reaction over a longer time, to see if the rate is constant throughout. I could also investigate another factor which would affect the rate of reaction, such as temperature of acid. Nicola Dearnley 10a1 ...read more.

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