CHM 130 Analysis of Copper Ore for Cu Content

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1 CHM 130 Analysis of Copper Ore for Cu Content Introduction: Copper, in various forms, has been mined from the Earth ever since mankind started using metal tools. Early Egyptian civilizations used bronze, an alloy of copper and tin, to make tools, weapons, and jewelry. Surface ore supplies were used up quickly and deeper ore deposits needed to be mined in order to access additional copper ores. Today, rich copper deposits are rare and deposits of native copper (pure copper metal) are very scarce. Most ores mined today are made of compounds that contain less than 1% copper. Mining the ore out of the ground is not complicated, but extracting the copper metal from the ore can be. Most ores are compounds of sulfides, carbonates, or silicates, and the metals can be extracted using the chemical properties of these compounds. Most copper ores are carbonates and so the chemical reaction of carbonates and acid can be used to dissolve the ore. Once the ore is dissolved, then the copper can be removed from the solution using a more active metal or by passing electricity through the solution. Many reactions are accompanied by an energy change. Energy can take the form of heat or light. If a reaction releases thermal energy it is called exothermic. Exothermic reactions cause their surroundings to feel warm to the touch. The thermal energy released by the reaction is absorbed by the surroundings (water, beaker, etc) and the temperature goes up. If a reaction absorbs thermal energy it is called endothermic. Endothermic reactions cause their surroundings to feel cold to the touch. The thermal energy absorbed by the reaction is taken from the surroundings (water, beaker, etc) and the temperature goes down. In this lab you will use aluminum, a more active metal than copper, to precipitate copper metal from solution. unbalanced equation: Al (s) + CuCl 2 (aq) AlCl 3 (aq) + Cu (s) You will analyze the amount of copper extracted from two different types of copper ore, azurite and malachite. From the data you collect you will be able to determine the weight percent of copper in each of the ores. Objectives: Use a series of chemical reactions to determine the percentage of copper in two common forms of copper ore, malachite and azurite. Experimental: Coordinate with another team in the lab room. Each of the two teams should take a sample of one of the ores so that one team has malachite and the other has azurite. Each team then completes steps 2 13 for their ore sample. The two teams will be sharing observations and data for their respective ore sample. 1

2 Each team will do the following with their ore: 1. Take a piece of the ore (malachite or azurite) and find the mass; try to get some mass under 1 gram. Record the mass of your ore on the data table. 2. Grind the ore using the mortar and pestle so that it is a fine powder. 3. In the fume hood, add ~10 ml of 3M HCl to the mortar. Use the acid to rinse off any ore from the pestle. Watch what happens in the mortar! Allow the reaction to continue until it stops. Compare your reaction to the group using the alternate ore. Record your observations about the color of the solution in the data table. 4. Using a piece of filter paper, a glass funnel, and a 125 ml Erlenmeyer flask, filter the solid from the liquid in the mortar, and wash off the mortar with DI water until all the material has been removed from the mortar, and washed off into the filter paper. Keep the liquid, place the filter paper and solid into a waste container. 5. Set a large test tube into a clean 250mL Erlenmeyer flask, and transfer the filtrate (the liquid you filtered in step #4) into the large test tube. 6. Obtain a length of Aluminum wire, about 20-25cm long; each team should have the same length of wire. Wrap the Al wire around a pencil, so that it resembles a coil, but leave one end straight. Hold the straight end of the wire and lower the coil into the test tube with the filtrate from step #5. Watch as the reaction occurs, and compare both ores simultaneously. 7. Every 1-2 minutes, gently shake the wire up and down to remove the residue. Wait for the reaction to finish completely, this should take minutes. a. Pick up the test tube and feel the outside, record your observation about the temperature change of the reaction in the data table. b. Observe the color change that is occurring in the solution during the reaction. Record your observations in the data table. c. Watch both teams results so that a comparison can be made between each ore as to the time for the reaction to complete, as well as any other differences that can be observed. 8. When the reaction is complete, gently shake the wire and remove it from the test tube. Use the wash bottle of DI water to remove as much residue sticking to the wire as possible, and get this residue into the test tube. Once the wire is clean, you may throw it away. 9. Obtain another piece of filter paper. Write your group s name on the filter paper. Then weigh it and record the mass on the data table. 10. Carefully filter the solid in the test tube using the glass funnel, use the wash bottle to ensure that you get all of the solid into the filter paper. a. Rinse the solid and filter paper again with DI water to remove as much excess solution as possible. b. Rinse the solid and filter paper with acetone. This will remove some water and help the solid to dry faster. 11. Carefully remove the filter paper from the glass funnel (wet filter paper is very fragile and tears easily), fold it in half and place it on a watch glass. 12. Place the watch glass into the drying oven. 13. When the filter paper is dry, weigh it and record the mass. Clean Up Dispose of all chemicals in the appropriate waste containers including the dried copper and filter paper 2

3 Name Section Lab Partner Analysis of Copper Ore for Cu Content A. Data Table Your Ore Sample The Other Team s Ore Sample Identity of the Ore Mass of ore used, grams Observations after adding HCl to the ore. Describe what you see happening. What color is the solution? What is creating the observed color? Should be bubbling/fizzing Solution will be green or bluegreen Copper ions dissolved in solution are creating the color Length of Al wire used. Observations after adding the Al wire. Describe what you see happening. What is the temperature of the test tube? Why is the solution changing color? Bubbling/ fizzing Brown crystals growing on Al wire Solution changing color from blue to grey/white/clear Copper ions leaving the solution and turning into solid copper metal Mass of filter paper, grams Mass of filter paper plus copper after drying, grams Mass of copper, grams 3

4 Results Table: Your Ore Sample Other Team s Ore Sample Mass of ore sample, grams Mass of copper after drying, grams % of Cu in ore Results: 1. Identify your ore sample as either malachite or azurite. 2. Calculate the mass percent of Copper in your ore sample, using the idea that % = (part/total) x Calculate the mass percent of Copper in the other team s ore sample. 4. Compare the % copper in your ore to the group who had the different ore. Which ore had the most copper in it? The azurite should have more copper than the malachite 5. Which ore would you use if you were in the business of mining copper, and why? Azurite would be more profitable. You get more copper from the same amount of ore. 4

5 6. Why did you use HCl in step #3? To dissolve the ore. The ore is a carbonate compound and it will react with HCl, dissolving the copper into ions in solution. 7. In step #7, what was going on chemically what type of reaction was this? (examples: combination, decomposition, single replacement, double replacement, acid-base, combustion) Include a balanced chemical equation. Type of reaction: _ single replacement _ Balanced Equation: 2 Al (s) + 3 CuCl 2 (aq) 2AlCl 3 (aq) + 3 Cu (s) Complete Ionic Equation: Net Ionic Equation: 2 Al (s) + 3 Cu 2+ (aq) + 6 Cl - (aq) 2Al 3+ (aq) + 6 Cl - (aq) + 3 Cu (s) 2 Al (s) + 3 Cu 2+ (aq) 2Al 3+ (aq) + 3 Cu (s) 8. In step #7, there was a second reaction occurring between the Al wire and the excess HCl, that created a gas (bubbles). Write a balanced chemical equation for this reaction. _ 2 _Al (s) + _ 6 _ HCl (aq) _ 2 AlCl 3 _ (aq) + _ 3 H 2 _ (g) 9. Was this reaction (in step #7) exothermic or endothermic and how did you know? (Compare the observations from both groups.) Exothermic. The outside of the test tube was warm. The malachite gives off much less heat than the azurite. 10. How did the color of the solution you were working with at different times indicate what was going on chemically? Color of the solution after adding HCl:_ the solution turned green or blue-green _ What is in the solution that is creating this color? dissolved copper ions Color change in the solution after adding the Al wire: _ blue _ to _ grey/white/clear _ What is in the solution that is creating this color change? Copper ions removed from solution 5

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