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Design two experiments, one using titration and one using gas collection to show that H2SO4 is a dibasic acid.

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Chemistry Practical Write-Up Aim: Design two experiments, one using titration and one using gas collection to show that H2SO4 is a dibasic acid. Gas Collection Experiment Prediction: If H2SO4 is dibasic it should give off a volume of hydrogen molecules, equal to the volume of H2SO4 used, below I have calculated how much gas to expect: H2SO4 + Mg � MgSO4 + H2 H2SO4 Concentration: 1 Mol/dm3 Volume: 0.025dm3 Moles: 1x0.025 = 0.025 H2 Moles: 0.025 0.025 * 24 Volume: 0.6dm3 Apparatus: Conical Flask, Magnesium, H2SO4, Bung, delivery tube, bowl of water, measuring cylinder. Diagram: Method: * Setup Apparatus as shown in the diagram. * Fill a conical flash with 25cm3 H2SO4. * Fill the measuring cylinder with water, making sure there are no bubbles, and turn it upside down in the water bath. * Drop the magnesium into the conical flask, and place the quickly place the bung on top. * The hydrogen gas will begin to displace the water in the measuring cylinder, wait until this stops, and record the results in a table like shown below, repeat until you have 3 results and calculate the average amount of gas evolved. ...read more.


Diagram: Method: * Setup apparatus as show in the diagram * Fill the Burette with H2SO4 and let some of the acid run through and back into the beaker, then fill the Burette back up and record the level it is filled to (from the bottom of the meniscus). * Using the graduated pipette and pipette filler add 25cm3 NaOH into a conical flask * Add a few drops of Bromothymol blue to the NaOH, it should turn blue. * Place the conical flask on a white tile and put it underneath the Burette. * Add 25 cm3 of water to a conical flask, and add a few drops of Bromothymol blue, this will be used as a control. * Do a rough run and record your results in a table like show below * Repeat the experiment more times, accurately releasing the acid drop by drop, until you get 3 concordant results (+/- 0.05 cm3) Rough Run 1st Run 2nd Run 3rd Run Initial Reading (cm3) ...read more.


Sodium Hydroxide, while less dangerous can still cause mild irritation and should also be handled with care. As when dealing with any chemicals goggles and a lab coat will need to be worn at all times, and as gas may be given off the practicals must be done in a well ventilated area. Most of the equipment used is made of glass, and so care is needed when handling the, should glass be broken it needs to be immediately cleaned away. H2SO4 [6] [7] [8] NFPA 704 "Fire Diamond" for H2SO4 taken from Wikipedia. Red 0 - Will not burn Blue 3 - Short exposure could cause serious temporary or moderate residual injury. Yellow 2 - Undergoes violent chemical change at elevated temperatures and pressures, reacts violently with water, or may form explosive mixtures with water White "COR" - Corrosive; strong acid or base Ingestion: Severe and permanent damage may result. Inhalation: Very dangerous, possibly fatal. Long-term effects not known. Skin: Causes burns. Eyes: Causes burns. NaOH [7] [9] NFPA 704 "Fire Diamond" for NaOH taken from Wikipedia. ...read more.

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The student has addressed the question well and has laid out the work well. The titles guide the examiner well and present her aim and conclusion in a logical order. The only flaw I can see is the section 'preliminary ...

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Response to the question

The student has addressed the question well and has laid out the work well. The titles guide the examiner well and present her aim and conclusion in a logical order. The only flaw I can see is the section 'preliminary work'. I was not exactly sure why the section was last and why it was so short. I had expected such sections to be longer and more detailed in suggesting why the work is necessary before conducting an experiment. Also, the diagrams (presumably of the apparatus) did not show up - most likely due to incompatibility of the softwares used. The use of diagrams is very good here and would help illustrate the points made.

Level of analysis

The student shows a high level of understanding of the topic and question set. They address it well throughout the piece of work in a logical order. They made the appropriate conclusion., however, I am wondering why the data was not typed into this piece of work. The gaps made in the table were obviously for recording results which were then not recorded electronically (I presume they printed the document off and recorded it by hand). This should not affect the mark however. The examples used in the piece of work is sound and the attention to detail is highly commendable. This assures the student gains high marks as it demonstrates that they have a clear understanding that is supported by detailed knowledge as evidence.

Quality of writing

The spelling, grammar and punctation are all fine. The use of technical terms is also flawless and the student clearly understands the meaning of them. The student follows the classic example (expect in the positioning of the 'preliminary work' section) of a science student writing up an experiment. Whilst it is 'classic', it is highly recommended that students stick to this structure as it is a very good basis to build upon, making writing the work easier. It also provides a very clear layout for the work which is beneficial to the student as the examiner can find information easily and follow through to the conclusion logically. The list of references at the end is perhaps more suited to being listed as a footnote. Yet, this does not affect the mark the student will get.

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Reviewed by crystalclearmagic 18/03/2012

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