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Investigate what factors affect the rate of reaction between magnesium and hydrochloric acid

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Introduction

My aim is to investigate what factors affect the rate of reaction between magnesium and hydrochloric acid. The factor that I will be focusing on is the concentration of Hydrochloric acid. Reaction Equation: Mg (s) +2HCl (aq) = MgCl2 (aq) +H2 (g) Magnesium + Hydrochloric Acid = Magnesium Chloride + Hydrogen There are several different variables you can such as temperature, concentration; surface area and whether or not to use a catalyst or not these all affect the rate of reaction. The effect of temperature on the rate of reaction is that, if the temperature is increased then the particles will move faster. This leads to more collisions. In addition, particles have more kinetic energy, so more collisions will lead to a reaction. The effect of the surface area on the rate of reaction is, when one of the reactants is a solid, the reaction must take place on the surface of the solid. By breaking the solid into smaller pieces, the surface area is increased, giving a greater area for collisions to take place and so causing an increase in the rate of reaction. ...read more.

Middle

With one measuring cylinder measure out the amount of hydrochloric acid needed and pour it into the beaker. With the other measuring cylinder measure out the amount of water you need and add to the hydrochloric acid in the beaker. The hydrochloric acid and the water the water together should be exactly 50mls in volume. Drop one piece of magnesium ribbon 3cm in length into the solution in the beaker and start the stop watch immediately don't forget to wear safety goggles. When all the magnesium has dissolved, stop the stop watch and record the time. Wash all the measuring cylinders and beakers before you do another test. To make sure that the test is fair I will have to make sure that other factors don't change like: The length of the magnesium strip will be kept at 3cm. It is important to make sure that each strip of magnesium is the same length and width, as the greater surface area will cause a faster reaction as there are more particles to collide with. The temperature of the acid and the water will be kept at room temperature. ...read more.

Conclusion

2.0m took 19.64 seconds whilst 1.0m (half the amount) took 72.29 seconds. As I stated above, I believe my experiment was done fairly but changes could have been made. I could have recorded more of the rates of reaction so that my results were more accurate. I believe there was a set pattern all through my results showing that as the concentration of acid is increased, the rate of reaction also increased. However, I believe that, even bearing these small problems in mind, the experiment was done thoroughly and successfully. Other methods which I could have conducted, which would have helped me support my conclusion, included: Measuring the temperature of the reactions as it happens. Measurements could be taken, for example, every 30 seconds. These results will then be plotted on to a line graph, with each different mole having different coloured line; this will give a clear indication to each concentration. These results will tell us how fast the reaction is happening and how each one differs from the next. Also the time of the reaction would be recorded in line with each temperature taken, e.g. 30sec = 10c, 60sec = 12c, and so on. Alex Welham 11T ...read more.

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