Dean Campbell tries to use at least one demo for every class to illustrate concepts described in his chemistry courses. In this post, he includes short descriptions of the demonstrations and props he has used while teaching his collegiate General Chemistry II courses.
This Pumpkinator is a fantastic orange-to-blue-to-orange chemical reaction that will make a great addition to your Halloween-themed chemistry demonstrations.
The reaction of hydrogen and oxygen gases to form water is well known to be an exothermic reaction. That reaction can occur by first absorbing the hydrogen into palladium metal, and then placing the resulting palladium hydride into contact with oxygen in the air. Infrared and visible light videos were recorded for this process involving palladium foil, and the Green Chemistry and safety aspects of these activities are considered.
The "Two-Faced" thionin reaction involves causing a purple solution to fade to colorless by shining light on the solution. I wondered if it could be demonstrated the color of light that caused this transition.
Inspired by a recent article in the Journal of Chemical Education, Tom Kuntzleman attempted to extract lithium from a coin battery, and to use the extracted lithium to produce a pink flame.
Check out the solution to Chemical Mystery #18: Peek A Boo Blue!
Beautiful, metallic mirrors of copper or silver can easily be formed in test tubes. Simply add the appropriate metal salt to a test tube, and heat! These reactions should be performed in a fume hood.
Learn how to give pennies a beautiful, silvery-colored plating.
Tom Kuntzleman tests to see if Powerade can be used as a source of reducing sugars in the classic silver mirror demonstration, and reminisces about Christmas days past when doing so.
Learn how to form a blue-green copper compound on a penny, and then use that compound to make green flames. This is a great summer time activity for your next campfire!