# Cold Stuff. Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility - Office of Science Education

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1 Cold Stuff

2 Cold Stuff What materials make good insulators? Problem Which substance makes the best insulator: cotton, air or steel wool? Research Answer the following True or False questions about insulators: True/False True/False True/False True/False Insulators don t allow heat to pass through them easily. Most metals make good insulators. Conduction, convection and radiation are ways that heat can move around. A good insulator will make an object get warmer. Hypothesis I think that will be the best insulator. (cotton, air or steel wool)

4 Data Collection and Analysis Cold Stuff Data Chart For each insulator: Record the Initial Temperature (somewhere near 20 C) Start the stopwatch when you put the insulator in the ice water Record the temperature EVERY 30 SECONDS Stop the stopwatch when it reaches 5 minutes (initial TEMPERATURE of insulator at TIME (minutes:seconds) temperature) INSULATOR 0:00 0:30 1:00 1:30 2:00 2:30 3:00 3:30 4:00 4:30 5:00 Name that VARIABLE!! Directions: Identifiy the Independent Variable, Dependent Variable, Constants and Control of this experiment. Independent Variable Dependent Variable Constants Control

5 Let s make a graph! Directions: Make a line graph for each of the three insulators you tested. Graph one insulator at a time. Start by plotting the insulator s initial temperature. Then plot the insulator s temperature at 30 seconds, one minute, one and a half minutes, all the way to 5 minutes. Plot the other two insulators on the graph in the same way. You will have to make different symbols for each insulator so that you can tell them apart Cold Stuff Results Graph KEY = = = 20 Temperature ( C) :00 0:30 1:00 1:30 2:00 2:30 3:00 3:30 4:00 4:30 5:00 Time (minutes:seconds)

6 Conclusion The BEST INSULATOR APPEARS TO BE QuestIons to ThInk About 1. Which container cooled the fastest? 2. Which container took the longest to cool? 3. Where did the heat inside the containers go as they were cooling? 4. Which material that your team tested is the best insulator? How can you tell? 5. What other materials do you think might make good insulators? 6. What materials would make poor insulators?

8 Cold Stuff What materials make good insulators? Problem Which substance makes the best insulator: cotton, air or steel wool? Research Answer the following True or False questions about insulators: True/False True/False True/False True/False Insulators don t allow heat to pass through them easily. Most metals make good insulators. Conduction, convection and radiation are ways that heat can move around. A good insulator will make an object get warmer. Hypothesis I think that will be the best insulator. (cotton, air or steel wool)

9 Data Collection and Analysis Cold Stuff Data Chart For each insulator: Record the Initial Temperature (somewhere near 20 C) Start the stopwatch when you put the insulator in the ice water Record the temperature EVERY 30 SECONDS Stop the stopwatch when it reaches 5 minutes (initial TEMPERATURE of insulator at TIME (minutes:seconds) temperature) INSULATOR 0:00 0:30 1:00 1:30 2:00 2:30 3:00 3:30 4:00 4:30 5:00 Cotton Air Steel Wool Name that VARIABLE!! Directions: Identifiy the Independent Variable, Dependent Variable, Constants and Control of this experiment. Independent Variable Dependent Variable Constants Control choice of insulator temperature inside insulator water in bath, temp of water, time, etc air filled container

10 Let s make a graph! Directions: Make a line graph for each of the three insulators you tested. Graph one insulator at a time. Start by plotting the insulator s initial temperature. Then plot the insulator s temperature at 30 seconds, one minute, one and a half minutes, all the way to 5 minutes. Plot the other two insulators on the graph in the same way. You will have to make different symbols for each insulator so that you can tell them apart Cold Stuff Results Graph = = = KEY Cotton Air S.W. 20 Temperature ( C) :00 0:30 1:00 1:30 2:00 2:30 3:00 3:30 4:00 4:30 5:00 Time (minutes:seconds)

11 Conclusion The BEST INSULATOR APPEARS TO BE QuestIons to ThInk About 1. Which container cooled the fastest? Usually air, but steel wool can come very close. 2. Which container took the longest to cool? Cotton 3. Where did the heat inside the containers go as they were cooling? Into the ice and water. 4. Which material that your team tested is the best insulator? How can you tell? Cotton, since it didn t change temperature quickly. 5. What other materials do you think might make good insulators? Answers vary. Wool, polyester, fur, etc What materials would make poor insulators? Answers vary. Copper, steel, iron, etc...

13 Cold Stuff This is an activity in which students investigate different materials to determine which makes the best insulator. Objectives: In this activity students will: work in groups be responsible for specific tasks within their groups measure liquid measure time using a stopwatch measure temperature change over time record data test and compare the effectiveness of different insulators create a line graph to depict the temperatures recorded at 30 second intervals using each insulator Questions to Ask: 1. How could the way you hold the container affect the data? 2. What is different about the insulators that may have caused them to retain heat differently? 3. What are some other materials frequently used as insulators? 4. How are insulators useful? When might you use one? When might you not? Travel Book Activities: Reading About Heat Transfer

14 Virginia State Standards of Learning Math 6.2 Number and Number Sense by comparing the temperature within containers filled with various insulators Math 6.18 Probability and Statistics by interpreting data using graphical methods (line graph and chart) Science 6.1 Plan and Conduct Investigations by making observations involving fine discrimination between similar objects by developing a multiple attributes classification system by identifying differences in descriptions and the construction of working definitions by recording precise and approximate measurements by stating hypotheses in a way that identifies the independent and dependent variables by devising methods to test the validity of predictions and inferences by manipulating one variable over time with repeated trials by collecting, recording and analyzing data using appropriate metric measures by organizing and communicating data through graphical representations Science 6.2 Demonstrate Scientific Reasoning and Logic by investigating ideas by asking for and actively seeking information by analyzing alternative scientific explanations LS.1 Plan and Conduct Investigations by organizing data into tables showing repeated trials and means by defining variables by using SI (metric) units by establishing criteria for evaluating a prediction by identifying sources of experimental error by identifying independent variables, dependent variables and constants by controlling variables with repeated trials to test the hypotheses by constructing, interpreting and using continuous line graphs to make predictions by evaluating and defending interpretations from the same set of data PS.1 Plan and Conduct Investigations by accurately measuring and reporting data using SI (metric) units by using thermometers to gather data by recording and interpreting data from line graphs by identifying independent and dependent variables, constants, controls and repeated trials by making valid conclusions after analyzing data C/T8.1 Communicate Through Application Software by communicating through application software with spreadsheets by entering and analyzing data, and creating graphs and charts to visually represent data

15 Cold Stuff Teacher Overview and Materials List Background: Jefferson Lab's accelerator uses niobium cavities to accelerate electrons. In order for the cavities to operate correctly, they must be cooled to very low temperatures. The cavities are bathed in liquid helium, which keeps them at a temperature of 2 K (-456 F), inside large thermos bottles called cryomodules. Cryomodules are designed to stop the three ways heat moves: conduction, convection and radiation. Insulators are materials that prevent the flow of heat. In this experiment, three different materials are tested to see how well they insulate. Minimum Materials Needed for Each Student Group: Long stem Celsius thermometer capable of reading temperatures from room temperature (~25 C) to 0 C Stopwatch A 1 pint container (with lid) filled with air A 1 pint container (with lid) filled with cotton A 1 pint container (with lid) filled with steel wool Bowl with a capacity of 750 milliliters 500 milliliters of ice water Optional Materials: A marked container to measure the ice water Pre-Activity Preparations: The Pint Containers 1. Remove all labels. 2. Drill a hole near the center of the lid just large enough for the thermometer to fit into. 3. Fill each container with the desired insulator. Notes: Wrap a piece of tape around the stem of the thermometer to prevent it from touching the bottom of the container.

16 Materials for Cold Stuff

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presentapresents Presents Science Notebooks in the Classroom kdkrifr Notebook Criteria This document was developed by Bay Area Schools for Excellence in Education (BASEE) a local systemic change project