Strand 3: Acid Rain Experiment




Дата канвертавання22.04.2016
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Strand 3: Acid Rain Experiment
Acid rain is a major environmental issue throughout Connecticut and much of the United States. Acid rain occurs when pollutants, such as sulfur dioxide from coal burning power plants and nitrogen oxides from car exhaust, combine with the moisture in the atmosphere to create sulfuric and nitric acids. Precipitation with a pH of 5.5 or lower is considered acid rain.

Acid rain not only affects wildlife in rivers and lakes but also does tremendous damage to buildings and monuments made of stone. Millions of dollars are spent annually on cleaning and renovating these structures because of acid rain.


Your Task

Your town council is commissioning a new statue to be displayed downtown. You and your lab partner will conduct an experiment to investigate the effect of acid rain on various building materials in order to make a recommendation to the town council as to the best material to use for the statue. In your experiment, vinegar will simulate acid rain.

You have been provided with the following materials and equipment. It may not be necessary to use all of the equipment that has been provided. Materials list: containers with lids, graduated cylinders, vinegar (simulates acid rain), pH paper/meter, access to a balance, safety goggles, building materials – limestone chips, marble chips, red sandstone chips, pea stone.
Two students performed the Acid Rain experiment, their hypothesis, procedure, and data is indicated below.
Hypothesis: If we soak marble, limestone, red sandstone, and pea stone in vinegar for two days, then the pea stone will have the smallest change in mass (and therefore be the best building material to resist acid rain).

Procedure:


  1. Collect the four building materials (types of stone) – marble chips, limestone chips, red sandstone chips, pea stone.

  2. Weigh out a sample of each type of stone and record your data.

  3. Put each sample in a separate plastic container with vinegar (acid rain) for two days.

  4. Set up two trials for each type of stone.

  5. After two days are up, pour off the vinegar, let the stone dry for another day.

  6. Re-weigh each sample of stone and record your data and determine how much weight was lost by each sample. Average your data.


Data Table:

Type of stone

Initial mass

Trial 1


Final Mass

Trial 1


Change in mass Trial 1

Initial Mass

Trial 2


Final Mass

Trial 2


Change in mass Trial 2

Marble


50 grams

49 grams




50 grams

49 grams




Limestone


45 grams

35 grams




45 grams

37 grams




Red Sandstone

55 grams

50 grams




55 grams

52 grams




Pea Stone


50 grams

48 grams




50 grams

50 grams



Answer the questions on the following page:





  1. Fill in the change in mass for each type of stone for Trail 1 and Trial 2. Graph the data in a manner which clearly indicates which type of stone is best for resisting acid rain. Put the independent variable on the X-axis and the dependent variable on the Y-axis.

  2. Based on the written procedure and data, describe three changes to the experimental procedure which would improve the experimental design for the experiment. Explain why each change will improve the procedure.

Change 1:
Change 2:
Change 3:

  1. Based on the hypothesis and data table, write a conclusion for the experiment which includes the following criteria:

1. Restate the hypothesis with a statement of support/rejection.

2. State your conclusions. Conclusions are related to the stated problem and fully supported by data (explain fully using data).

3. Validity of the data and conclusions is thoroughly discussed in reference to experimental error (design error, procedural error, measurement error).

4. Suggestions for improvement on experimental design and/or further study


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