# DETERMINATION OF DENSITY

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1 Experiment 1 DETERMINATION OF DENSITY Prepared by Ross S. Nord and Robert C. Rittenhouse, Eastern Michigan University PURPOSE Make experimental measurements applicable to density determinations. Learn the relative precision of liquid measurements using beakers, graduated cylinders, and volumetric pipets. MEASUREMENTS The quality of a measurement is evaluated by two criteria, accuracy and precision. The accuracy of a measurement is determined by how well it agrees with the "true" or "accepted" value. Accuracy is measured in terms of error. Error is the difference between the measured value of a quantity and the true/accepted value. In making measurements it is important to try to identify and eliminate or reduce the sources of error. Experimental error may be classified as either systematic (determinate) or random (indeterminate) error. Systematic error is always attributable to a definite cause, such as a malfunction in an instrument, erroneous technique, miscalculation, etc. SYSTEMATIC ERROR CAN BE GREATLY REDUCED BY LEARNING THE CORRECT USE OF INSTRUMENTS AND APPARATUS! Random errors are inherent in the device and technique being used for the particular measurement and tend to fluctuate in a random fashion about the "true" value of the quantity being measured. The smaller the random errors, the more precise the measurement is. The precision of a measurement indicates how reproducible it is. Precision can only be determined by making repetitive measurements of the same quantity using the same technique. Good precision indicates that the random errors are small; however, there still may be systematic errors leading to poor accuracy. If the precision is poor then it is essential that many repetitive measurements be taken with the expectation that the large random errors will cancel each other out when an average is taken. DENSITY A property that is often used to characterize or identify a substance is the density. Density is defined as mass per unit volume: Density = Mass / Volume Commonly, densities are given in g/cm 3 or g/ml. Table I. Density of pure water at various temperatures T( o C) density (g/ml) T( o C) density (g/ml)

2 IN THIS EXPERIMENT You will calculate the expected mass of 10 ml of water. Then you will use various pieces of glassware to measure out 10 ml and determine the mass to see which glassware is most precise. Assuming no equipment malfunctions and that you follow the procedure correctly, all of the errors in this experiment should be random errors, not systematic errors. Hence, the most precise technique should also be the most accurate one. Using the best technique (glassware), you will measure the density of an unknown solution. PRE-LABORATORY PREPARATION 1. Read the techniques, procedure and data analysis sections of the experiment. 2. The computer-generated PRELAB assignment for this experiment will be done in lab the first period. Refer to the procedure and data analysis sections of the experiment as needed. The prelab questions for this experiment exactly replicate the questions in the data analysis section. EXPERIMENTAL SECTION WASTE DISPOSAL All of the chemicals used in this experiment may be safely disposed of by washing down the sink. TECHNIQUES USING ELECTRONIC BALANCES The chemical being weighed is always in a container and not on the balance pan. To obtain the mass of only the chemical, the mass of the container must be subtracted from the total mass. Balances do this for us. The empty container is placed on the balance and then the zero button is pressed this is known as taring the balance. Now when chemical is added to the container, the balance shows the mass of the chemical only. Note: after taring, the container can be removed from the balance, but the balance will remember its mass until the zero/tare button is pressed again. 1. Place the empty container or weighing paper in the center of the balance pan. Press the zero (or tare) button and wait until the reading is zero ( 0.001). 2. Add the chemical to the container. If there is a danger of spilling on the balance, remove the container before adding the chemical. 3. Do not weigh hot or warm objects; objects should be at room temperature. 4. Wait until the reading stabilizes ( 0.001). Avoid moving or causing any air currents that would cause the reading to fluctuate. 5. Record all digits displayed (to the nearest g). If the last digit is fluctuating, record its average value. (The last significant figure is assumed to be uncertain.) USING VOLUMETRIC PIPETS Always use a suction bulb with a pipet. NEVER PUT A PIPET INTO YOUR MOUTH! To draw liquid into a pipet: 1. Be sure that the outside of the pipet is clean and dry. Immerse the bottom of the pipet in the solution. Do not rest the tip of the pipet on the bottom of the container since this can block the opening. Hold the pipet with one hand placed close to the top of the pipet. 2. With your free hand, squeeze the suction bulb and place it on top on the pipet. Do not insert the pipet into the suction bulb! 1-2

3 3. Slowly release the pressure on the suction bulb drawing liquid up into the pipet. Always draw excess liquid into the pipet since you will lose some performing the next step. Do not draw liquid into the suction bulb; the liquid may damage the bulb and carry debris down into the pipet making it very difficult to clean and contaminating your experiment. 4. Quickly remove the suction bulb with one hand while simultaneously sliding a finger, from the hand holding the pipet, over the top of the pipet to prevent the liquid from escaping. It is recommended that you use the forefinger for this. Rinsing a pipet: 1. Draw liquid into the pipet, until the liquid is about one-fourth the way up the wide bulge in the middle of the pipet. 2. Tip the pipet onto its side and then release your finger on the top of the pipet allowing the liquid to flow. Tilt and rotate the pipet so that the liquid rinses the complete inner surface of the pipet. 3. Place your finger over the end of pipet and then turn the pipet upright. Place the tip of the pipet over a sink (or waste container) and release your finger allowing the liquid to drain out of the pipet. 4. If the inside sides of the pipet have any drops sticking to them it is not clean and not delivering its claimed volume. If necessary, consult the instructor on how to clean it. Use of a pipet: 1. Each time you wish to use the pipet for a different solution you should rinse the pipet with the new solution. 2. Draw liquid into the pipet until the meniscus is at least an inch above the calibration mark near the top of the pipet. Slowly let up your finger on the end of the pipet to allow the liquid to slowly drain. Stop when the bottom of the meniscus rests on the calibration mark. Touch the tip of the pipet to the side of the container to remove any clinging drops Gently place the tip of the pipet inside of the receiving container and allow the liquid to drain. Notice that all of the liquid does not drain. The liquid that remains in the tip is supposed to remain there and should not be blown out. Remove any clinging drops from the outside of the pipet s tip. PROCEDURE You will do this experiment individually. PREPARATION 1. Fill a 250 ml beaker with at least 100 ml of distilled water. The only distilled water tap is the single tap located on the far left at the front sink. A carboy will distilled water may also be available at the back sink. 2. Measure the temperature of the water, record it on your data sheet, and complete question 1 of the Data Analysis section. Look up the density at the measured temperature given in Table I. Calculate the mass of ml of water at this temperature (as you did in the prelab). You need to do this before continuing with the experiment. This value will tell you if you are getting accurate results. MEASURING THE MASS OF 10-mL OF H 2 O 3. Remove a 50-mL beaker from the drawer at your station. Clean and dry it (if it looks dirty). Place the dry beaker on the balance and then tare (zero) the balance. The balance should read (± 0.003) g. 4. Remove the beaker from the pan and pour an aliquot (sample) of distilled water into the beaker until it hits the 10-mL calibration line. If you overshoot, simply pour water back from the 50-mL beaker into the 250-mL beaker. Wipe up any spilled water with a paper towel.

5 Name Station Used Instructor/Day/Time DATA SHEET Station Checked & Approved Record all of your data with the appropriate number of digits and the correct units. You may add extra lines if you wish to take more than the minimum two or three readings. Temperature of water: Measured mass of ml of water: 50-mL beaker 50-mL graduated cylinder 10-mL volumetric pipet Mass of aliquot 1 Mass of aliquot 2 Error in aliquot 1 Error in aliquot 2 The error are calculated as described in step 16 of the procedure, Based upon the calculated errors, which piece of equipment can be used most reliably to measure 10 ml? Measured mass of ml of unknown solution: These values will be used to determine the density of your unknown solution. (Add extra lines, if you need to take more measurements.) unknown number: mass of aliquot 1 mass of aliquot 2 mass of aliquot 3 1-5

6 DATA ANALYSIS Show your work for each type of calculation. They should be clearly organized, legible and include the units for each quantity. Be sure to round each answer to the proper number of digits. 1. Use the tabulated density of water at the measured temperature to calculate the theoretical mass of 10 ml of distilled water. Since our balances show 3 places after the decimal, calculate your mass to 3 places after the decimal. mass of water 2. Calculate the density of each aliquot of your unknown solution. Report each answer to 3 places after the decimal point. It is not necessary to show your work for all of your trials. Only show the calculation for the first aliquot in detail. (Extra lines for results are provided in case you measured more than three aliquots of unknown.) density of aliquot 1 density of aliquot 2 density of aliquot 3 (optional) density of aliquot 4 (optional) density of aliquot 5 3. Calculate the average density of your unknown solution. Only use the results for what you considered to be good trials. Show your calculation so it is clear which you consider to be good trials. average density unknown number 1-6

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