• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

THermal Physics Lab

Extracts from this document...


Ankit Shahi                September 24 2009

Thermal Physics lab

The aim of the experiment is to find the total heat energy lost, Q, (in joules) from hot water and hot milk when placed in a cooler in two different separate troughs for 1800 seconds (30 minutes) at equal cooler temperature. This will be done by taking equal volume of hot water and hot milk in two separate troughs and then measuring their temperature, T, every 180 seconds (3 min.) for 1800 seconds (30 minutes) by using a thermometer.

Using the formula of Q = ρ m C(p) (T₂ - T₁) the heat energy lost can be found, where ρ is the density of the liquid, m is the mass of the liquid, T₁is the room temperature in Celsius, T₂ is the temperature of the liquid in Celsius and Q is the heat energy lost (in Joules). C is the specific heat capacity which is measured in J / Kg K for both liquids.

Heat is a form of energy that is transferred by a difference in temperature. The temperature of both liquids should decrease because the heat from both the liquids would be transferred to the cooler and thus the liquids would lose heat.

...read more.


+ 1ºC)









































Calculating heat loss for water:

Density of water = 1 Kg/L (in the calculations below the density of water is rounded to 1 Kg/L. The density of water changes with the temperature. Also, note that the temperature of the cooler represents T₁ in the formula)

Specific heat capacity: 4186 J/ Kg K

Q = ρ m C(p) (T₂ - T₁)

Q = (1kg/ L) (0.500 L + 0.005) (4186 J/ Kg K) (26 + 1ºC – 2 + 1ºC)

Q = -50232 J

The heat is in negative because the hot water has lost its energy or in other words it has got colder. Therefore the heat energy lost is in negative. Also, the density of the water changes with temperature. For example at 20 degrees Celsius it is 0.9982 kg/L while on 22 degrees Celsius it is 0.997 kg/L

Error for heat loss:

The uncertainty for the specific heat capacity would not be taken into consideration while calculating the error since the specific heat is a constant (a calculated value)

(0.005 / 0.500) + (2/24) * 50232 = 840 J

Calculating heat loss for water:

Density of milk = 1 Kg/L (in the calculations below the density of milk is rounded to 1 Kg/L. The density of water changes with the temperature.)

Specific heat capacity: 3770 J/ Kg K

Q = ρ m C(p) (T₂ - T₁)

Q = (1kg/ L) (0.500 L) (3770 J/ Kg K) (29 – 2) ºC

...read more.



This lab was a success. This can be seen from the equal temperature change and the total heat energy lost from both water and milk. But there were big errors found with the heat energy lost. This could be a result of the temperature of the troughs. The temperature of the troughs could affect the temperature change and thus it could bring errors. Another problem would be the color of the apparatus. If the apparatus is black in color, for example, it would absorb more rather than give off energy


To solve these problems, make sure that the color of the instruments used should be the same so that there would be no other things that affect the heat lost. Also, the temperature of the troughs should be the same. The temperature should be measured by using a thermometer.

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Physics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Physics essays

  1. Energy density experiment - Aim: To determine the energy density of ethanol

    By using the following formula was used to find the percentage discrepancy. The percentage discrepancy was calculated to be 44.67%. This tells us that our experimental value was 44.67% away from the accepted value. It is also evident that there is a significant error within this experiment as the average

  2. IB Latent Heat of Fusion of Ice Lab

    the experiment are:- * Extra heat generated within the system due to friction when the stirrer was shook up and down. * The system wasn't a perfect insulator and therefore, heat might have been lost to the surroundings. * Not all the ice might have melted.

  1. IB Specific Heat Capacity Lab

    I recorded the new equilibrium temperature of the body and recorded all the necessary values. ix. All the values were recorded. x. I repeated the process for another two times using same Bob. DATA COLLECTION AND PROCESSING (DP) DATA COLLECTION: DATA SYMBOLS UNCERTAINITIES TRIAL 1 TRIAL 2 TRIAL 3 1 Mass of Calorimeter ( g )

  2. Design Lab, Charge on Balloons

    Take one balloon and fill it with air roughly till it fills up one-third of its limit and tie the balloon with a single knot. 4. Use the wool cloth to rub the balloon precisely 10 times only. Rub all over the balloon to distribute the charge evenly.

  1. Pendulum Lab

    Stability- The stability of the retort stand could alter the path of the pendulum, the shaking of the retort stand was kept to a minimum as it was held by a group member to keep it stable. Materials: � Chocolate chips (500g)

  2. HL Physics Revision Notes

    Newton?s third law states that when a force acts on a body, an equal and opposite force acts on another body somewhere in the universe. One example would be two roller-skater?s pushing off one-another Additional: Mass is the amount of matter contained in an object measured in kg, whilst weight is a force measured in N.

  1. Rocket Physics Lab

    In some trails the rockets did not fly straight. Some obviously wrong values were omitted and those particular trials were performed again. An average distance is taken from the five trails of each rocket. Distance Travelled by different sized paper rockets Full sized paper rocket (m) ± 0.005m ¾ size paper rocket (m)

  2. IB Specific Heat Lab

    Zinc .387 Tin .227 Copper .385 Cadmium .231 Water 4.138 Percent Error % error= Accepted-Experimental Accept % error = (.387-.321) % error = (.51-.227) Zinc .387 Tin .227 % error = 17 % error % error = 125% error % error = (.385-.32)

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work