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The amount of heat created from an alcohol burner.

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Introduction

The amount of heat created from an alcohol burner Planning I am trying to find how much heat is evolved from the reaction going on from an alcohol burner. I will use a more specified version of the following apparatus. I am going to use an alcohol burner to burn certain amounts of alcohol. From this I can see how much alcohol is burnt when it is heating distilled water to a certain temperature. The container we have been told to use is a can. Because I am burning alcohol's, I will need to take some safety precautions, such as wearing safety goggles, and not sitting down when the experiment is being taken place. For the experiment I am going to use 5 different alcohols. They go in order, from 1 carbon atom in Methanol to 5 in Pentanol. I predict there will be a change in energy given off. I think the more carbons there are the more energy produced as there are more bonds. "In a chemical reaction, bonds in the reactant molecule are broken and new ones are made. Atoms are rearranged. Energy has to be put in to break bonds, and energy is given out when bonds form. The formulae for the alcohols are below, with a general formula: Alcohol Formula General formula CnH2n+1OH + O2 �2nCO2 + 2n+2H2O METHANOL 2CH3OH + O2� 2C02 + 4H20 ETHANOL 2C2H5OH + O2 � 4C02 + 6H20 ...read more.

Middle

I will then measure the wick trying to be as accurate to 1cm as possible. Then I will heat the water and stir the water with a thermometer. I will heat the water and heat it for 10�c. Then I will put the cap on. After I have cleaned the cap with tissue paper I weigh the alcohol burner and record the results. I do this twice for each alcohol. Fair test To make it a fair test I will have to: * Try and clean the soot at the bottom of the alcohol burner to prevent unequal combustion. We can see if there is unequal combustion if the flame it yellow instead of blue. The alcohol has not burnt properly therefore carbon and carbon monoxide are given off instead of oxygen. * I will try and stir the water at a constant speed as this will alter the results. * The length of the wick has always got to be the same as this will alter the height of the flame. * I will have to clean the cap of the alcohol burner after the flame is extinguished as there will be soot and condensation on the cap which will make the weight of the alcohol burner heavier. The results that I obtained are below. Alcohol Initial weight (g) ...read more.

Conclusion

I tried to make sure the wick always kept the same height but it was very difficult to get it right with a ruler. Although the thermometers were accurate to half a degree, I still made mistakes either putting the cap on too early or too late. We had to try and make sure when we were measuring with a beret that the marker was eye level but as the beret is so high up it was difficult. The tins were not good insulators therefore letting heat out everywhere so it took longer for the water to heat up. There was no lid on the tin so that meant there was heat loss form the top of the tin. I may have improved my results by using other alcohols making a bigger range, I could have used hexanol or heptanol. As my graph was not good this could have improved it and make more of a curve. I could have maybe used bubble wrap and have a lid on the tin. The bubble wrap is a good insulator that wouldn't let as much heat out giving a much better result. If we used a new tin every time this would prevent incomplete combustion therefore being more accurate. The flame was aimed at the centre this means it would be the centre of the tin would get heated the most making it unfair. We could have used a long tube or a burner which covered more area. ...read more.

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