Copper Cycle Lab

Topics: Chemistry, Sulfuric acid, Copper Pages: 2 (404 words) Published: October 8, 2012
During this experiment, we were trying to see whether copper, after a chain of chemical reactions, will revert back to its elemental form.

First, I added nitric acid with copper in a beaker, which turned into a copper nitrate, a blue-green solution. Afterwards, I added sodium hydroxide, and my solution colored to a dark blue solution called copper hydroxide. I heated the solution to evaporate the water and I got a brownish-blackish solid called copper oxide. Once the solid appeared, I poured in sulfuric acid to it and I got copper sulfate, a bluish solution. The final step I took was to add the element zinc, which turned the solution from blue to clear, with a brown solid in the bottom of the beaker, copper.


During each step, something happened. For instant, for the first step, when I added the acid to the copper, the copper disappeared and the solution turned from the clear acid color to a blue-greenish hue. In the next step, there was another chemical reaction when I added the sodium hydroxide. The whole solution turned blue when I stirred the mixture. When the time came to evaporate the solution, the liquids disappeared, leaving behind a wet, brownish solid in the middle of the beaker. When the solid was hot, it bubbled and popped until it cooled down. When all the liquids evaporated, I scraped off the solid and put it in a separate beaker. Once I put the sulfuric acid in it, the brown solids (copper oxide) slowly dissolved and turned the acid into blue. After the acid was blue, I added the metal/grey colored zinc into the solution; the solution bubbled and the zinc turned the solution clear. The zinc disappeared and in its place, copper appeared.


For each step, there was a chemical reaction, except for the part where we evaporated the water/liquefied chemicals. For each step, I was turning the copper into a compound. When an acid was added to the copper, it turned the element into a compound....
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