In this Activity, students determine the concentration (percent volume) of oxygen in air. They place small quantities of fine steel wool into a test tube that is then inverted in a beaker of water. Oxygen in the trapped air reacts with the iron to form rust. The Activity ties in well with atmospheric chemistry.
Looking for an easy, hands-on experiment to use in your classroom at the beginning of the school year? In the June, 2013 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education, Isao Ikemoto and Kouichi Saitou describe a simple experiment to demonstrate the electrolytic dissolution of copper ions from a copper electrode. This experiment can be conducted using only items that are easily obtained around the home or in grocery stores.
This lab was written as part of the Target Inquiry program at Grand Valley State University in Michigan. Students build an electrochemical cell, learn about the symbolic equations used in electrochemistry and manipulate a model representing the particulate level of what is happening during the electrochemical process.
Electrolysis of an aluminum nitrate solution produces oxygen at the anode and hydrogen at the cathode.
Electrolysis of a potassium nitrate solution produces oxygen at the anode and hydrogen at the cathode.
Electrolysis of a calcium nitrate solution produces oxygen at the anode and hydrogen at the cathode.
An electric current is passed through a sulfuric acid solution. Gases collected at the electrodes are tested.
Electrolysis of a cobalt(II) nitrate solution produces oxygen at the anode, and hydrogen and cobalt at the cathode.