Try out this though-provoking capstone demonstration for the Chemical Reactions unit!
Igniting paper towels that have been soaked in concentrated potassium nitrate and allowed to dry yields a flame reminiscent of that produced by guncotton. Repeating this experiment with other metal nitrates produces flames with different colors, plus a few other chemical surprises! This series of experiments is fascinating and connects to a wide variety of chemical topics including combustion, redox reactions, chemical thermodynamics, and flame tests. You don't want to miss this one!
Learn the chemistry behind the reaction between calcium carbide and water...melon...?!
Diffusion of HCl(g) from concentrated solutions of HCl can be used to illustrate some chemistry related to the train accident in Ohio.
Why does the "Whoosh Bottle" experiment behave differently at different temperatures?
Did you know that sand can be converted into a mixture of gases that spontaneously ignites in air? The procedures involved are relatively simple to perform, spectacular to observe, and relate to a rich assortment of chemical principles.
Michael Jansen reflects on a very common empirical formula lab that asks students to determine the empirical formula of MgxOy. He then explains how he continues to use it as a "successful failure", how he demonstrates an alternate procedure and leads his students to an important lesson.
This classroom activity challenges students to figure out the volume of gaseous carbon dioxide emitted from the combustion of 1 gallon of gasoline fuel.
The Ruben's Tube (also known as a Flame Tube) is a classic experiment used in physics classes. There's also a bit of chemistry to be learned while experimenting with a Ruben's Tube...
You are likely aware that diamonds are converted - albeit slowly - to graphite under normal conditions. Thus, diamonds don't last forever, in contrast to the popular advertising slogan. However, did you know that you can use chemistry to prove that diamonds are not forever? It's simpler than you think...