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ZingPath: Energy in Chemical Systems

Using the Calorimeter

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Energy in Chemical Systems

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Lesson Focus

Using the Calorimeter


Learning Made Easy

You will find out about the energy stored in the bonds of molecules and how to predict if heat is released or consumed during a chemical reaction.

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Now You Know

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:

  • Define calorimetry.
  • Understand that the heat of a reaction can be calculated by measuring the temperature change.

Everything You'll Have Covered

What is the difference between an exothermic reaction and an endothermic reaction?

~ In an exothermic reaction, heat is given off to the environment and, in turn, the amount of heat in the environment increases. In an endothermic reaction, heat is taken from the environment and, in turn, the amount of heat in the environment decreases.

What is a calorimeter?

~ A calorimeter is a machine with a tank and heat insulation that is used to calculate the changes in the heat of an environment that occur as the result of a chemical or physical reaction.

How does a calorimeter work?

~ During a chemical or physical reaction, heat is given off or taken from an environment in the calorimeter's reaction tank. This results in an increase or a decrease in the temperature of the water that is also held in the calorimeter. Based on this change in temperature, the calorimeter can calculate how much heat is given off or taken from the environment.

How are calorimeters used in connection with food?

~ Calorimeters can be used to determine the caloric values of various foods.

Tutorial Details

Approximate Time 2 Minutes
Pre-requisite Concepts Students should have a general understanding of the following terms: bomb calorimeter, caloric value of food, and calorie.
Course Chemistry
Type of Tutorial Animation
Key Vocabulary bomb calorimeter, caloric value of food, calorie