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# Preparation of Magnesium Oxide and determining its empirical formula

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Introduction

CHEMISTRY LABORATORY REPORT Preparation of Magnesium Oxide and determining its empirical formula Nikita Bansal B.D.Somani International School Chemistry SL Candidate Number- 002602015 AIM : Preparation of Magnesium Oxide and determining its empirical formula QUALITATIVE DATA The magnesium ribbon is initially a shiny metal which is grayish-silver in colour. After heating it in the crucible, it starts glowing bright white. A grayish-white powder is produced after the reaction between magnesium and oxygen has been completed. 2Mg + O2 2MgO QUANTITATIVE DATA RAW DATA Trials Weight of Crucible Weight of Crucible + Magnesium Ribbon 1. 27.50g � 0.01 27.76g � 0.01 2. 27.50g � 0.01 27.76g � 0.01 3. 27.50g � 0.01 27.76g � 0.01 Weight of Crucible 27.50g � 0.01 Weight of Crucible + Magnesium 27.76g � 0.01 Weight of Crucible + Magnesium Oxide 27.95 g � 0.01 DATA PROCESSING Magnesium Mass of Magnesium = [(Mass of Crucible + Magnesium Ribbon)-(Mass of Crucible)] = (27.76- 27.50)g � (0.01+0.01) = 0.26g � 0.02 Amount of Mg Atoms = Mass/Molar Mass = 0.26/24.31 = 0.0107 mol % error = Error/Mass of Magnesium x 100 = 0.02/0.26 x 100 = 7.692% ? ...read more.

Middle

Oxygen lies in Group 6 of the periodic table due to which it acquires an electronic configuration of 2.6. It gains two electrons to complete its octet. It therefore receives a charge of 2-. Therefore, the reaction between Magnesium and Oxygen leads to a transfer of electrons from Mg to O, giving it a ratio of 1:1. Therefore, the Empirical Formula (the simplest whole number ratio) is MgO. An assumption is made that Mg only reacts with the oxygen present in the atmosphere. This assumption is the major source of the error in the experiment because Mg readily reacts with Nitrogen present in the atmosphere to form magnesium nitride (Mg(s) + N2(g) Mg3N2(s)). It is assumed that all the magnesium that has reacted with the oxygen, which is untrue. This error can be prevented by keeping the lid on the crucible as often as possible to prevent the mixing of the Mg with atmospheric gases such as nitrogen and carbon dioxide. Another effective method that can be used is the addition of water to the crucible. ...read more.

Conclusion

Also, while heating, if the crucible is not covered with the lid, it can lead to loss in the form of smoke. Thus, as a precaution the lid of the crucible must always be kept on. Another error which could occur is if the water which had been added to the magnesium had not completely evaporated. This can lead to an incorrect mass being calculated due to which the crucible should be kept in an incubator to ensure complete evaporation of the water. Also, the magnesium used must be pure to ensure a correct empirical formula. To check for the purity, add acid to the metal. If an odorless gas (hydrogen) is formed, it is pure. The magnesium ribbon can be cleaned using sand paper. In mass calculations, sufficient errors must be acknowledged. Some random errors associated with limitations of the instruments can lead to errors in the final reading. Thus the weighing balance and other instruments should be high precision instruments to ensure maximum precision. It must be ensured that these errors are corrected so that the experiment can be accurate and precise. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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