You are on page 1of 5

Experiment 6: Heat Effects

Laboratory Report

Department of Biological Sciences
College of Science, University of Santo Tomas
Espaa, Manila, Philippines


Experiment 6 is all about Heat Effects.
In Activity 1, using a calorimeter, the group
calculated for the specific heat of Aluminum
which is 528.38 J/kg C. With that calculated
value, the group obtained the % error of 41.94%.
For activity 2, using the same calorimeter used
in Activity 1, the group was asked to calculate
for the heat fusion of ice by Conservation of
Energy or the Latent heat of fusion. The group
obtained the value 2531 J/kg with an
exaggerated %error of 99.24%. For Activity 3,
using a rod and a steam jacket, the group was
asked to calculate for the Coefficient of Thermal
Expansion which is 4.89x10
/K with also a
huge % error of 97.96%.

I ntroduction

Heat is a measure of how much thermal
energy is transmitted from one body to another.
Similar to work, it can also be measured in
joules but it is more frequently measured in
calories (cal) which is the amount of heat
needed to raise the temperature of one gram of
water by one degree Celsius.

When heat is added to a substance, one of
two things can happen:
1) The substance will experience a rise in
its temperature. The heat can be
interpreted as an increase in the average
kinetic energy of the molecules. This
increase in the average kinetic energy is
expressed in numbers and is called
temperature. Temperature is not energy;
it only measures the thermal energy of
an object.
2) The substance can change state. For
instance, an ice cube when heated
becomes water. This change in state
however does not cause the temperature
to rise. [1][2]


Specific Heat measures how much heat
is required to raise the temperature of a certain
mass of a given substance. It is measured in
units of J/kg C or cal/g C. Specific heat
allows us to express the relationship between
heat and temperature. In a mathematical
formula, it is written as:

Q = the heat transferred to a material
m = the mass of the material
c = the specific heat of the material
= the change in temperature.

The latent heat of fusion of water which
is the latent heat gained or lost in transforming a
solid into a liquid or a liquid into a solid
is J/kg. It means that J must
be added to change a kilogram of ice into water
and remove same amount of heat to change one
kilogram of water into ice. Temperature
throughout this phase change remains constant
at 0C.

Solids expand when they are heated.
This occurs because of the increased vibration of
the molecules and as the vibration become
larger, the molecules are pushed apart resulting
in the expansion of the solid in all direction. A
substance will have a coefficient of linear
expansion, , and a coefficient of volume
expansion, . These coefficients can be used to
determine the change in a substances length, L,
or volume, V, given a certain change in
temperature. [3]


Three activities were done in order to
complete this experiment. For the first activity,
the metal object (aluminum) was weighed. Then
a piece of thread about 30 cm long was attached
to the aluminum and was slipped into the metal
object. Afterwards, the metal jacket was placed
into the beaker of water; this water was then
heated until the temperature of the object was 80
degrees Celsius. While heating the object, the
inner vessel of the calorimeter was weighed. The
water was then placed into the vessel until it was
2/3 full; the inner vessel with water was then
weighed. Afterwards, the inner vessel was
placed in its insulating jacket and its temperature
was measured. When the object has been heated
to 80 degrees Celsius, it was quickly transferred
to the object from the beaker to the calorimeter.
Another thermometer was then inserted through
the cover and the water was then stirred. The
equilibrium temperature was then recorded.
After such, the specific heat of the aluminum
and the % error was calculated.

For the second activity, the inner vessel
of the calorimeter was first weighed. The
calorimeter was then filled with half full of
water and with that, it was weighed again. The
inner vessel was then placed into its insulating
jacket and with that, the initial temperature of
water inside the calorimeter was recorded.
Pieces of ice were then added to the water inside
the calorimeter. With that, the mixture of ice and
water was stirred until all the ice melted and the
thermal equilibrium has been established. The
inner vessel with water and melted ice was then
weighed. With that, the heat of fusion of ice and
the % error was calculated.

For the third activity, the initial length
of the rod to be tested was first measured. It was
then placed inside the steam jacket and was
closed tightly with a stopper at both ends,
leaving out a small portion of each end of the
rod for necessary contacts. The steam jacket was
then mounted in the metal frame. The steam
jackets have two outlets. One was for
introducing steam into the jacket and the other
one was for the steam to come out of the jacket,
with that, the first outlet was connected by
means of a rubber tubing to the boiler. Through
the central hole of the jacket, the initial
temperature of the rod was then measured. After
doing such, the metal frame was then connected
to the galvanometer. As indicated by a sudden
movement of the galvanometer needle, the
micrometer screw was then moved so that it
touches the end of the rod. With that, the initial
reading of the micrometer disc was then
recorded. Afterwards, the disc was then unwind
so that the rod can expand freely. For twenty
minutes, the rod was then heated by means of
steam coming from the boiler. The final
temperature of the rod was then recorded. Again,
the disc was then moved until it was in contact
with the rod again and the final reading of the
disc was then recorded. After such, the
coefficient of linear thermal expansion of the rod
and the % error was then calculated.

Results and Discussion

After the experiment was done, the
following results were obtained:

Table 1. Specific Heat of Metal (Aluminum)
Mass of Sample 16.93 g
Mass of Inner Vessel of
43.90 g
Mass of Inner Vessel of
Calorimeter with Water
301.48 g
Mass of Water Inside Inner
Vessel of Calorimeter
257.58 g
Initial Temperature of Water and
Inner Vessel of Calorimeter
Temperature of Sample 80
Equilibrium Temperature of
Sample, Water and Inner Vessel
of Calorimeter
Calculated Specific Heat of

Accepted Value of Specific Heat 910

% Error 41.94%
The table shows that the calculated specific heat
of the sample metal aluminum was quite far
from the accepted value; hence, percent error
was rather high. This may have been caused by
errors in measurements of the calorimeter with
water, the temperatures, etc. While the
computations may have been right, the values
may have been erroneous.

Table 2. Heat of Fusion of Water
Mass of Inner Vessel of
43.90 g
Mass of Inner Vessel of
Calorimeter with Water
240.69 g
Mass of Water Inside Inner
Vessel of Calorimeter
196.79 g
Mass of Inner Vessel of
Calorimeter, Water, and
Melted Ice
280.56 g
Mass of Melted Ice 39.87 g
Initial Temperature of Water
and Inner Vessel of
Equilibrium Temperature of
Inner Vessel of Calorimeter,
Water, and Melted Ice
Calculated Latent Heat of

Accepted Value of Latent Heat
of Fusion

% Error 99.24%

This exercise exhibited the highest percent error
among the three parts performed. The calculated
latent heat of fusion of water was very small
compared to the accepted value. The sources of
error are most probably the weighing. Factors
may have come into play: spillage of water,
inaccuracy of the scale, etc.

Table 3. Thermal Expansion of Solids
Initial Length of Rod 0.54 m
Initial Reading of Micrometer
0.31 m
Final Reading of Micrometer

Elongation of Rod

Initial Temperature of Rod 22
Final Temperature of Rod 90
Experimental Value of
Coefficient of Thermal

Accepted Value of Coefficient of
Thermal Expansion

% Error 97.96%

Another part with a very high percent error is the
thermal expansion of solids. The calculated
value was almost 100%, which means it was
very wrong. The most probable source of error
was the reading of the micrometer caliper. The
caliper can be tightened even when in contact
with the metal rod; therefore, the measurements
may or may have not been as accurate as


For Activity 1, the specific heat is the
amount of heat per unit mass required to raise
the temperature by one degree Celsius. In the
case of the group, using Aluminum and water,
the heat lost from aluminum is equal to the heat
gained by water. A calorimeter is used to
temperate the heat of an object. Overall, for
Activity 1, the group was able to calculate the
specific heat of the aluminum sample.

For Activity 2, Latent heat, in the
experiment, is absorbing of heat during a change
of state that occurs without a change in
temperature, meaning a phase transition as seen
in the experiment, the melting of ice.

For Activity 3, thermal expansion in the
experiment is the tendency of the rod to change
in volume in response to a change
in temperature. For both activity 2 and 3, there is
a huge % error because of some factors like the
accuracy of the instruments, the accuracy of the
weighing scale used for obtaining the mass of
the objects. Still, for both activities, the
members of the group were able to compute for
the Latent Heat and Coefficient of Thermal
Expansion. There could be a much more
efficient output if there are more accurate
measurements, i.e., mass, length, etc.


1. Is it possible to add heat to a body without
changing its temperature?

You can add energy to a body (in the form of
heat) and not raise its temperature by causing a
phase change. When you heat ice it takes energy
to convert it from ice to water, but does not
change the temperature of the body until it is all
converted. [4]

2. Explain why steam burns are more painful
than boiling water burns.

Steam is hotter than boiling water. Water boils at
212 degrees Fahrenheit, and yet steam can be as
hot as 700 degrees Fahrenheit. The reason why
steam is actually hotter than boiling water is due
to the fact that water boils, and then becomes a
vapor at the base temperature of 212 degrees.
Water does not turn to steam at a temperature
lower than 212 degrees. [5]

3. Early in the morning when the sand in the
beach is already hot, the water is still cold. But
at night, the sand is cold while the water is still
warm. Why?
The sand is hot because it takes very little
energy to change the temperature of sand. Sand
also cools off quickly. When day changes to
night, the sand quickly changes its temperature
until it is the same temperature as the air.
The water takes lots of energy to heat up. When
night time comes, there is so much energy stored
in the water that it takes a long time for the
water to reach equilibrium with the air. [6]

4. Explain why alcohol rub is effective in
reducing fever.

Rubbing alcohol cools the skin by convection, as
the alcohol evaporates it carries the heat away
from the body with it, just like perspiration, only
faster. [7]

5. Cite instances where thermal expansion is
beneficial to man. Cite also instances where
thermal expansion is a nuisance.

It is beneficial for planned exploitation like
breaking frozen nuts from bolts using heat. It is
a nuisance when there is undesired characteristic
behavior resulting in additional costs and design;
like in roadway construction where the road can
crack and separate due to change in temperature.

6. Why is water not used in liquid in glass

Water will not rise or fall at temperature changes
as Mercury because water is not as dense as
Mercury. [9]

7. The density of aluminum is 2700 kg/m
C. What is its density at 100

The density of aluminum at 100
C is 2685

8. How much heat is needed to change 1g of ice
at 0
C to steam at 100

The latent heat for melting ice is 80 cal/g. That
means that 1g of ice requires 80 cal of heat to
melt. Since the specific heat of water is 1.00
C, that means that 1.00 calorie is needed
to raise 1g of water 1
C. Thus, it would take 1 x
1.00 calories to raise 1g up 1
C and 100 x 1 x
1.00 = 100 cal to raise the water to its boiling
point. The latent heat for boiling water is 540
cal/g. That means that 1g of water requires 540
cal of heat to boil. This means that 720 cal is
needed to change 1g of ice to steam. [10]

9. An aluminum calorimeter has a mass of 150g
and contains 250g of water at 30
C. Find the
resulting temperature when 60g of copper at
C is placed inside the calorimeter.

Using specific heat c
= 900 J/kg-K for Al and c

= 4186 J/kg-K for H
O. The calorimeter and
water together have: m
= [m
] = 0.4 kg and
= [(m
] = 2953.75 J/kg-K. T
C and T
= 100
Using specific heat c
= 386 J/kg-K for Cu.
Solve for the temperature T
by using the
equation T
= (m
) =
C. [11]