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To determine which alcohol makes the best fuel for burning.

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Chemistry coursework: Burning Alcohols Aim: The aim of this investigation is to determine which alcohol makes the best fuel for burning. Equipment: Tripod Tin can Alcohols: Ethanol, Propanol, Brutanol, Pentanol, Hexanol, Heptanol, Octanol. Thermometer Stopwatch Heat proof mat Mass Balance Variables: Constant variables: * Type of container * Amount of water used * Surrounding temperature (approximate) * Height of beaker * Mass Balance (if possible) * Height of beaker from wick Changeable variables: * The type of alcohol used Safety: Safety goggles must be worn at all times during the experiment to protect the eyes. After the tin can has been heated, it must be handled with great care as it will be immensely hot, as it shall contain hot water. The other equipment that will have been heated may also be slightly hot. All equipment should be kept in the centre of the table to prevent spillage. ...read more.


Ach type of alcohol requires a certain amount of energy before all the bonds are broken. The more bonds there are in a chain length the more Hydrocarbons there will be. Hydrocarbons are the source of potential energy, which is converted into kinetic energy. Therefore if the alcohol contains more hydrocarbons more energy will be released into the atmosphere when the energy is converted. Scientific theory: Energy is released when new bonds are formed. If the bond is to be broken a sufficient amount of energy is required Amount of energy required to break certain bonds: Chemical bond Energy required to break bond (J) C-H 413 O-H 464 C-O 358 C-C 346 C=O 745 O=O 497 The breaking of bonds is an endothermic reaction meaning heat is taken in. The breaking of making of bonds is an exothermic reaction meaning heat is given out. ...read more.


21 34 Butanol 203.07 202.88 21 43 219.99 217.63 26 45 216.08 214.92 25 55 Pentanol 214.78 213.42 25 50 213.42 211.83 26 51 220.39 28.36 25 82 Hexanol 219.02 217.68 24 47 217.68 216.42 26 55 175.80 216.36 25 42 Heptanol 207.80 206.66 25 47 206.66 205.33 26 51 203.27 202.38 25 31 Octanol 202.38 201.61 24 36 201.61 200.78 25 34 Evaluation: There were a number of factors in this experiment that lead to some of the results being slightly out. 1. Heat conducted and convected away through the air 2. Radiation of heat out into the atmosphere 3. Change in temperature of tin 4. At high temperatures heat is lost faster to the air, which makes higher temperatures more inaccurate 5. Evaporation of water 6. Evaporation of alcohol after burning 7. Flame size changed due to type of alohol. How the experiment is stopped and whether it is on time 8. Different size of burner wick 9. 10. 11. 12. ...read more.

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