Unformatted text preview: cept of “spectator ions”; look at the reaction of salts and try to
determine what is meant by this term.
3. Silver nitrate is a very sensitive test for any solution which has chloride ions; where might a
test like this be useful to the average consumer? Dakota State University Page 77 of 232 Experiment 4: Synthesis of a Compound General Chemistry I and II Lab Manual Experiment 4: Synthesis of a Compound
Purpose: To synthesize alum from recycled aluminum.
Persona: The traits that makes one’s personality. Background:
See “Basic Laboratory Procedures”: balance, Bunsen burner
As I am writing this experiment, I am drinking a nutritious delicious diet cola. Well,
maybe not nutritious. Who am I trying to kid; not delicious either. But it is a diet cola (I’m not
gonna tell you which; after the way I opened this introduction, the Coca-Cola Bottling Company
would sue my butt off if I did!). AND, it is an aluminium can. I know, because it has a
“recycle” symbol on it. Now, let me ask you a question; if you knew that the can that YOU were
drinking from at some point touched MY lips, would you STILL be drinking from it? I didn’t
think so. Good thing, too, because you’re not supposed to be drinking in lab anyway.
So what CAN we do with…well…cans? One possibility is to turn them into something
else, like, oh, for instance, Alum. Now, alum is not just a great joke in Bugs Bunny every time
they need to make somebody pucker up, oh no no no no NO. It is also an astringent, used in
dyeing and printing fabrics, tanning, baking powders, gelatin and several other things as well.
In this experiment, we are going to do our first synthesis. In a previous experiment, you
had the opportunity to see some chemical reactions occurring, but we weren’t being very careful
about how to control the reaction to try to maximize our
yield. In today’s experiment, we will be much more
careful with our measurements and try to maximize the
Fumes can be a particular problem in this
procedure, and because of limited fume hood space, we
will need to construct a specialized means to remove
them. Using proper procedure (see safety instructions),
put the stem of a long-stem funnel through a rubber
stopper, and attach a piece of vacuum hosing to the stem
as well. Invert the funnel and secure it to a ring stand with
a clamp. Attach the other end of the vacuum tube to an
aspirator (preferably) or vacuum line; be sure that a
Dakota State University Page 78 of 232 Experiment 4: Synthesis of a Compound General Chemistry I and II Lab Manual vacuum is drawn. You have just built a personal fume hood. Check with your instructor to be
sure it has been constructed correctly, and remember, it will only work if it is directly over (in
physical contact) with the container.
WARNING: This is a hazardous experiment; be sure to follow ALL safety
Measure out about 0.5 gram of aluminium pieces. It is not important to have ex...
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