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Investigation to Find Out How the Amount of Electric Current Affects the Amount of Copper Deposited During the Electrolysis of Copper Sulphate Solution Using Copper Electrodes

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Introduction

Krishan Raja - 10 Blue - Chemistry AT1 - Mr Keaney Investigation to Find Out How the Amount of Electric Current Affects the Amount of Copper Deposited During the Electrolysis of Copper Sulphate Solution Using Copper Electrodes Aim In this experiment, I will attempt to find out how the amount of electric current affects the amount of copper deposited during the electrolysis of copper sulphate solution using copper electrodes. Hypothesis I predict that the mass of the anode will steadily rise as the negative copper ions will be attracted to the positive electrode, at which the anode is connected. Therefore the anode's mass will rise as more copper from the copper sulphate solution is electrolysed and attracted to the anode (+). The equation which shows the movement of the atoms in the anode and cathode is this: Anode: Cu2 + (aq) + 2e- ==> Cu (s) Copper atoms become ions so the anode wears away Cathode: Cu (s) ==> Cu2 + (aq) + 2e- Copper ions become atoms so copper is deposited The anode is impure copper. As it wears away, the cathode gets plated with pure copper and the impurities fall away. Hence the cathode increases weight. The above equation shows that with electrolysis, the copper atoms in the solution are charged positive, and as opposites attract, the positive copper ions will be attracted to the negative electrode (the cathode) ...read more.

Middle

was poured into a small beaker. The two copper electrodes were thoroughly cleaned using water, to scratch off the layers of copper from previous experiments. The electrodes were weighed, their masses recorded and placed into the beaker containing Copper Sulphate solution. The electrodes were connected to a D.C power supply, variable resistor and ammeter. A varying current flowed (0.1, 0.15, 0.2, 0.25, 0.3 Amps) and the experiment was left for 3 minutes. After 3 minutes the DC power supply was switched off and both electrodes were removed from the solution. They were then washed by dipping in distilled water, and dried by dipping into propanone (a volatile liquid which evaporates quickly) and placed near a hairdryer to dry of any excess liquid. Once clean and dry both electrodes were both carefully weighed and their new masses recorded. The experiment was repeated until I had done the experiment with all 5 amounts of current. I did this three times. The apparatus used for this experiment were: 1. D.C. power supply - for providing the power for the experiment. 2. Ammeter - for measuring the amount of current flowing though the circuit. 3. Electrodes [Anode (+) and Cathode (-)] 4. Variable Resistor - for changing the amount of current uses. 5. Circuit wires - for connecting up the apparatus to the power supply. 6. Beaker - for holding copper sulphate solution. 7. ...read more.

Conclusion

Another factor which may have affected the overall outcome of the investigation may have been the fact that the practical work of the investigation was carried over from lesson to lesson, meaning that variables such as the concentration or the amount of the Copper Sulphate solution could have changed between lessons. To overcome this problem, a stock solution of Copper Sulphate should have been made so as the concentration remained the same at all times. The same electrodes and equipment should have been used throughout. However, as this experiment was conducted through two separate lessons, different equipment was used, therefore altering the results. Also, when weighing, the same electrical balance should have been used as there may have been slight differences between the two balances. This is what could explain the anomalous result in the graph. However the results were precise enough and enough figures were produced in order for me to get a reasonable set of results. I found this investigation very interesting and to add to this experiment, I can investigate more of the variables in this experiment, which may or may not affect the mass of copper deposited onto the cathode, such as changing the time or solution concentration. I could also use different equipment for the experiment, such as an A.C power supply, different solutions etc ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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