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Is air a good insulator?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Is air a good insulator? Plan In this experiment I am trying to find out if air is a good insulator. There are three different types of heat transfer Conduction, Convection and Radiation. Conduction mostly occurs in metals because as metals get hotter the ions in it start to vibrate and they get a lot more kinetic (movement) energy. Then this energy is transferred to the cooler parts of the metal where it has free electrons as they diffuse through the metal, bumping into other ions and electrons. Metals are really good conductors because they allow energy through them quickly on the other hand non-metals are not good conductors because they let energy through them slowly but that makes them a good insulator. Convection only occurs in liquids and gasses. As a liquid or gas gets hotter and hotter the particles move faster causing it to expand and becomes less dense then other regions. Once the liquid or gas is warm it will rise and be replaced with colder denser regions. Radiation always emits in infrared and the warmer the object the more heat energy it gives out. It depends on the surface of an object on how much radiation is given in/taken out. An insulator is something that does not conduct thermal energy easily. I think air is not a good insulator because its particles are going anywhere but if the air were trapped in someway then it would make a good insulator. ...read more.

Middle

When the boiling water is poured in this will start to heat up the can straight away again. These particles in the metal can will start to vibrate. This then causes the air particles in the large bubble wrap to vibrate. Which will then vibrate against the can causing the can to keep hot. I think that the small bubble wrap will be better than the large bubble rap because in the small bubble wrap the air particles have a smaller space to vibrate in. So the particles in the smaller space will vibrate a lot more. And then this will vibrate more against the metal can. Causing the metal can to keep warm. However in large bubble rap there are large spaces so the air particles take longer for the particles to vibrate enough against the metal can to keep it warm. The third experiment is when a polythene bag is rapped around the metal can with no air around it. So when the metal can is filled with boiling water there will be no air particles to vibrate in the polythene bag. Finally in this experiment there will be a polythene bag around the metal can and it will be full of air. The air will stay in the polythene bag with an elastic band holding the top. When the boiling water is poured in I can tell that there are more air particles around the metal can in a confined space. ...read more.

Conclusion

80 83 82 5.5 79 83 81 6 78 82 80 6.5 78 82 80 7 77 81 79 7.5 77 81 79 8 76 80 79 8.5 76 80 79 9 76 79 79 9.5 75 79 77 10 75 78 77 Temp Drop 11 12 11 Bag with no air Time Temp 1 Temp 2 Averages 0 84 84 84 .5 82 83 83 1 81 82 82 1.5 80 81 81 2 79 81 80 2.5 79 80 80 3 79 80 80 3.5 78 80 79 4 78 79 79 4.5 77 79 78 5 77 78 78 5.5 76 78 77 6 76 78 77 6.5 76 78 77 7 75 77 76 7.5 75 77 76 8 74 76 75 8.5 74 76 75 9 74 76 75 9.5 73 75 74 10 73 75 74 Temp Drop 11 9 10 Bag with air Time Temp 1 Temp 2 Averages 0 86 86 86 .5 85 85 85 1 84 84 84 1.5 83 83 83 2 83 83 83 822.5 82 82 82 382 82 82 82 3.5 81 82 82 4 81 81 81 4.5 80 81 81 5 80 80 80 5.5 80 80 80 6 79 80 80 6.5 79 79 79 7 78 79 79 7.5 77 79 78 8 77 78 78 8.5 77 78 78 9 76 78 77 9.5 75 77 76 10 75 77 76 Temp Drop 11 9 10 ...read more.

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