Observation of Different Photons When Elements Are Heated (Chem Lab)

Topics: Atom, Chemistry, Energy level Pages: 3 (659 words) Published: April 15, 2013
Observation of Different Photons when Elements are Heated
The bright line spectrum is the range of colorful lights that are emitted from an atom in its excited state. A “normal” atom, or an atom in its ground state, is when all of the atom’s electrons are in their proper energy level. When an atom is in its excited state, electrons jump to different energy levels making them unstable. As the electron tries to get back to its respective energy level, energy is emitted in the form of light (photons). Every element emits a different color that can be categorized into the bright line spectrum. Different elements give off different colors when heated because they all have different chemical properties, therefore, they will react differently under high temperatures. For example, [1] strontium, lithium carbonate, and strontium carbonate are often used in fireworks to create a red color. Calcium may be used to create orange, sodium for yellow, aluminum for white, barium chloride for green, copper for blue, strontium and copper for purple, and titanium for silver. Even though all elements give off unique colors when heated, it is impossible to identify all elements with the naked eye by doing this test because you have to know what color the element burns and sometimes the elements emit very similar colors. In this experiment, five known elements will be put under extreme heat to observe the color of the light emitted. Then, three unknown elements will be determined based upon the results of the known elements.

2. Bunsen burner
3. Matches
4. Forceps
5. Wooden toothpicks
6. Sample of liquid calcium
7. Sample of liquid barium
8. Sample of liquid lithium
9. Sample of liquid sodium
10. Sample of liquid strontium
11. Three unknown liquid samples

1. Turn on the gas for the Bunsen burner and light it with a match. 2. Using the forceps, take a toothpick and dip it into the...
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