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Investigating the Burning of Fuel

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Investigating the Burning of Fuel In this experiment I will be burning some alcohols to heat a tin of water and the aim of this experiment is to find out which alcohol gives out the most energy with the least amount of fuel. The fuels that I am going to experiment with are: Butanol, Methanol, Ethanol and Propanol. Method- To start with I will weigh each fuel with its lid on; this is so nothing can spill or evaporate from the container in which the alcohol is. Then I will take one of the fuels that I have weighed and light the wick, I will then put it underneath the apparatus, which I previously set up. The alcohol will put underneath a tin filled with 120cm3 of water. I will then heat the water until it reaches 450C. I will then weigh the alcohol again with the lid on and I will write down the results of the before and after temperature. ...read more.


1st set of results Fuel Beginning Weight (g) After Weight (g) Difference Before temperature After temperature Water Volume Butanol 182.19g 181.1g 1.9g 200C 45oC 120cm2 Propanol 191.33g 189.79g 1.54g 20oC 45oC 120cm2 Methanol 204.2g 202.51g 1.69g 20oC 45oC 120cm2 Ethanol 208.9g 205.86g 3.12g 20oC 45oC 120cm2 2nd set of results Fuel Beginning Weight (g) After Weight (g) Difference Before Temperature After Temperature Water Volume Butanol 202.27g 201.24g 1.03g 20oC 45oC 120cm Propanol 225.52g 223.33g 2.19g 20oC 45oC 120cm Methanol 173.36g 171.54g 1.82g 20oC 45oC 120cm Ethanol 202.11g 199.6g 2.51g 20oC 45oC 120cm I will now work out the average for all the alcohols including the difference. Fuel Beginning Weight After Weight Difference Butanol 192.23g 191.17g 1.06g Propanol 208.425g 206.56g 1.865g Methanol 188.78g 187.025g 1.755g Ethanol 205.505g 202.73g 2.775g The reaction taking place through the experiment is an exothermic reaction meaning that it gives out energy. ...read more.


+ (4x12) + 16= 74g per mole O=16 Propanol H=1 C=12 (8x1) + (3x12) + 16= 60g per mole O=16 Methanol H=1 C=12 (4x1) + 12 + 16= 32g per mole O=16 Ethanol H=1 C=12 (6x1) + (2x12) + 16= 46g per mole O=16 Evaluation The results I achieved from this experiment were reliable, but there are some ways I could have improved the experiment to get better results. * There were a few windows open making the flame go out a few times, I shut them during the experiment. But if I was going to do the experiment again I would make sure all of the windows were shut to start with. * The wicks of all the alcohols had different lengths making some of the flames closer to the bottom of the tin. Another way of improving the experiment is to insulate the sides of the tin or cover the top to stop heat loss. ?? ?? ?? ?? Holly Mitchell 1 ...read more.

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