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To Show How the Volume of Fuel Affects the Energy Output In the Form of Heat

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Investigation To Show How The Volume Of Fuel Affects The Energy Output In The Form Of Heat Prediction The choice of variables are as follows volume/mass of fuel, volume of water, distance from can & burning time. I chose volume/mass of fuel. I predict that the larger the volume/mass of fuel the more energy will be released. I believe this because if you have a larger volume/mass of fuel it will contain more bonds than a smaller volume/mass and so will have the potential to give off more energy when bonds are formed. This is backed up by the fact that atoms have a mass, and so when there is a larger mass it obviously means there is more atoms and where there is atoms there is bonds to hold the atoms together to form a compound. Thus having more atoms(weight) means there is more bonds(energy potential) to form and give off energy. Ethanol Bond Values H H C? C ?347j x 1=347j ? ? C? H ?413j x 5=2065j H? O ? C? C ? H C? O ?358j x 1=358j * ? O ? H ?464j x 1=464j H H 347+2065+358+464=3234 joules So 1 molecule of ethanol has the potential bond energy of 3234joules. ...read more.


CH3CH2OH + 3O2 ??Combustion??? 3H2O + 2CO2 Ethanol + Oxygen ?Combustion??? Water + Carbon Dioxide Fair Testing I will make the experiment fair by making sure everything apart from my variable, which is "volume/mass of fuel", is kept the same. The things that must be kept the same are volume of water in can, the distance from the table to the base of can, using the same height crucible every time, using the same scales every time and always re-filling the can with different water. I think most of these points are fairly self explanatory except for the "height of the crucible" being kept the same, this is because if you use a higher crucible the accessibility of air to the fuel may be reduced, and so if you use a lower crucible the air accessibility will be greater thus giving less incomplete combustion. I kept the volume of water the same by using a measuring cylinder. The distance from table to can I kept the same by measuring the distance between it each time. The only other thing that is important is that I re-filled the can every time so the starting temperature was always pretty much the same every time, although being a few centigrade out would not have made ...read more.


There was one or two things I noticed during the experiment, one of these was that the lower volume's of fuel burned more efficiently than the greater volumes, I noticed this when the larger volumes burnt with a orange flame for a lot longer, whereas the lower volumes burnt most of the time with a blue flame. This is most likely to be because the larger volumes try to burn a lot faster but as there was not enough oxygen it could not burn completely efficiently. Some things I would have liked to have changed are the apparatus because this is probably where most of the inaccuracies came from for instance the problem with the tin can, which I explained earlier. Instead I would liked to have used a glass beaker which I would have used every time but would have cleaned the base every time. I would also liked to have used more accurate measuring equipment because there must have been quite a lot of inaccurate measurements that I made. Another thing I would liked to have been able to use was a vacuum cupboard which I could have filled with oxygen to prevent incomplete combustion. Also I would have liked to have used a electric thermometer which would have been much more accurate. ...read more.

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