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Relationship between mass of MgO and its formula

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Chemistry AT1 Christopher Baziwe 11OL Investigating the formula of magnesium oxide Aim Investigating the relationship between the mass of magnesium oxide formed when magnesium is burnt in air and how this relates to the accepted formula for magnesium oxide. Intro Magnesium ribbon burns in air with an extremely bright white light, giving off a large amount of energy, and white smoke with is mostly magnesium oxide in very fine particles. The magnesium ribbon easily crumbles into a white powder, which is a mixture of magnesium oxide (about 90%) and magnesium nitride (about 10%). Since air is a mixture of oxygen and nitrogen gases, both elements react with the magnesium metal. From the diagram below we can see how magnesium reacts with oxygen, the way it shares its electrons by ionic bonding. Magnesium + Oxygen Magnesium Oxide Mg + O MgO In this experiment e are trying to find out the relationship between the mass of magnesium oxide formed when magnesium is burnt in air and how this relates to the accepted formula for magnesium oxide. To do this you can find out the empirical formula, which helps by showing the simplest ratio in which the atoms combine. I will perform this experiment in groups using nickel crucibles. Also I will be provided with magnesium but at different lengths: - 5cm, 7.5 cm, 10 cm, 12.5 cm, 15 cm So technically I will be performing this experiment five times. ...read more.


Also when waiting for it to cool down place it on a burning mat so the table does not get damaged. � repeat this process with all the lengths of magnesium and record the weights in the table below: Mg Length(cm) Mass of crucible +lid(g) Mass of crucible +lid +mg(g) Mass of crucible +lid +product cold(g) Mass of Mg used(g) Mass of oxygen used(g) 5.0 cm 7.5cm 10.0cm 12.5cm 15cm To calculate the mass of magnesium used and the mass of oxygen combined I use this: Mass of magnesium used Mass of crucible+ lid+ magnesium - mass of crucible + lid Mass of oxygen combined Mass of crucible + lid + product cold - mass of crucible + lid + magnesium Safety - A burning mat must be used as we do not want to cause a fire or burn any of the surroundings during this experiment - Wear goggles at all times as the reaction between magnesium and oxygen is violent and the light and particles produced from the reaction can damage your eyes. - Do not look directly into the crucible when the reaction is happening, as the light produced from the reaction is very intense. - Wait for the crucible to cool down after the experiment, as we do not want to damage the scales, because they are very sensitive. ...read more.


Also what I had noticed around the class is that not everybody burned all the magnesium in the crucible; this meant that their results would have been incorrect because for this experiment to work all the magnesium in the crucible should have been burnt. However, this was always certain to happen, as some people in the class do not listen to instructions. Another problem could have been the scales; sometimes they could have not been reset after someone else has used them meaning that some weights could have been recorded incorrectly, however this could have been marginal because it is usually out of place by around 0.01 grams. All these factors can be resolved but only in prestige laboratory conditions. If I did this experiment again throughout the experiment I will only lift the crucible lid a little bit so I can see what is going on. Also I would take down more results, I would change the ranges of length of magnesium, instead of gathering results form the class because their results can be seen as unreliable as they may not have followed the process of the experiment like I did. Obviously 20 results are better than 5 as they produce a more reliable conclusion. Also I would change the way I proved my conclusion, instead of just doing the empirical formula for magnesium oxide, I can find the percentage composition of the compound and compare them to create a better conclusion. Christopher Baziwe 11OL ...read more.

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