• 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. 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.

  2. IB Specific Heat Capacity Lab

    MC � 0.01 41.35 41.35 41.35 2 Mass of Calorimeter + Water ( g ) MC + Mw � 0.01 103.75 105.70 102.82 3 Mass of Water ( g ) Mw � 0.02 62.40 64.35 61.47 4 Mass of metal bob ( g )

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

    Graph 2. Max and min The above graph shows the maximum and minimum gradient which shows the maximum and minimum result of the energy density of ethanol from this experiment. The maximum value of energy density is 16,785,412.06 J kg-1 and the minimum value is 14,895,228.86 J kg-1.

  2. Ohm's Law lab

    Since, temperature is a factor affecting resistance, a drawback of the procedure is that we get an error due to this increase in temperature of the light bulb filament which is not quantifiable. In the case of the bulb filament, this error is not significant in affecting the readings as

  1. Pendulum Lab

    from the right edge were marked, and 1 cm and 2 cm from the bottom were marked. 4. Steps 2 and 3 were repeated on the remaining two wooden slats. 5. The slats were arranged to obtain the dimensions: 1cm x 2 cm x 6cm 6. Chocolate chips were obtained.

  2. World Energy resources

    The rotor or the propeller blade is the part which turns when the wind comes. This causes the coil of wire to rotate with the generator. The gearbox is present there so that the speed of the rotor would match the speed of the turbine.

  1. IB Specific Heat Lab

    (122.6 ± .2) (29.5 ± .1 – 24.5 ± .1) Q gained = 2564.2 ± .3 Tin Q lost = 2564.2 ± .3 Q lost (2564.2 ± .3) = (c) (70.5° C ± .05) (100 – 29.5± .1) c of zinc = .510 ± .04 J g-1 K-1 Q gained = (4.183 ± 0)

  2. HL Physics Revision Notes

    Impulse also equals (p? ?p) Ft=mv The impulse of a time-varying force is represented by the net area under the function (the integral) of the force-time graph. Law of conservation of momentum: The total momentum of a system remains constant provided there is no resultant external force.

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