There are two versions of each lab, one with a ten-question conclusion and one with directions for a full lab report. This way the teacher has the option! Each lab is two pages to allow for one two-sided handout.
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I teach high school chemistry and this is exactly what [I] was looking for. Labs included simple household chemicals that could be easily found. Nice format, easy to follow along procedures, and touches on every topic of our chemistry curriculum.”
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*Some of you have already purchased my lab book – be sure to check out Page 141 !
“Stanford [University] researchers have developed a water-based battery that could provide a cheap way to store wind or solar energy generated when the sun is shining and wind is blowing so it can be fed back into the electric grid and be redistributed when demand is high.”
“The prototype manganese-hydrogen battery, reported in Nature Energy, stands just three inches tall and generates a mere 20 milliwatt hours of electricity, which is on par with the energy levels of LED flashlights that hang on a key ring. Despite the prototype's diminutive output, the researchers are confident they can scale up this table-top technology to an industrial-grade system that could charge and recharge up to 10,000 times, creating a grid-scale battery with a useful lifespan well in excess of a decade.
Yi Cui, a professor of materials science at Stanford and senior author on the paper, said manganese-hydrogen battery technology could be one of the missing pieces in the nation's energy puzzle - a way to store unpredictable wind or solar energy so as to lessen the need to burn reliable but carbon-emitting fossil fuels when the renewable sources aren't available. "What we've done is thrown a special salt into water, dropped in an electrode, and created a reversible chemical reaction that stores electrons in the form of hydrogen gas," Cui said.”
“Wei Chen, a postdoctoral scholar in Cui’s lab, led the team that dreamed up the concept and built the prototype. In essence, the researchers coaxed a reversible electron-exchange between water and manganese sulfate, a cheap, abundant industrial salt used to make dry cell batteries, fertilizers, paper, and other products.
To mimic how a wind or solar source might feed power into the battery, the researchers attached a power source to the prototype. The electrons flowing in reacted with the manganese sulfate dissolved in the water to leave particles of manganese dioxide clinging to the electrodes. Excess electrons bubbled off as hydrogen gas, storing that energy for future use.
Engineers know how to re-create electricity from the energy stored in hydrogen gas so the important next step was to prove that they can recharge the water-based battery.
The researchers did this by re-attaching their power source to the depleted prototype, this time with the goal of inducing the manganese dioxide particles clinging to the electrode to combine with water, replenishing the manganese sulfate salt. Once this process restored the salt, incoming electrons became surplus, and excess power could bubble off as hydrogen gas, in a method that can be repeated again and again and again.
Cui estimates that, given the water-based battery’s expected lifespan, it would cost a penny to store enough electricity to power a 100-watt lightbulb for twelve hours.”
“Wind turbines operate on a simple principle. The energy in the wind turns two or three propeller-like blades around a rotor. The rotor is connected to the main shaft, which spins a generator to create electricity.”
“Photovoltaics is the direct conversion of light into electricity at the atomic level. Some materials exhibit a property known as the photoelectric effect that causes them to absorb photons of light and release electrons. When these free electrons are captured, an electric current results that can be used as electricity.”
“The prototype needs development work to prove itself. For one thing it uses platinum as a catalyst to spur the crucial chemical reactions at the electrode that make the recharge process efficient, and the cost of that component would be prohibitive for large-scale deployment. But Chen said the team is already working on cheaper ways to coax the manganese sulfate and water to perform the reversible electron exchange.”
This is a real-life application of a redox process -- you might want to analyze the reactions in your class.
Past blog posts about Electrochemistry include:
05/04/2014 Electrochemistry – Redox Basics
05/07/2014 Electrochemistry – Balancing Redox
05/14/2014 Electrochemistry – Electrochemical Cells
05/18/2014 Electrochemistry – Electrolytic Cells
05/07/2015 Penny Battery
04/07/2017 Electrochemistry Research Articles’
04/28/2017 New Battery Coating
07/14/2017 Using Redox to Clean Rust
*This Blog contains several entries that would be helpful to your chemistry classroom. Check out the Topic List to help you to find past Blog entries.
Also, Write To Me about your successes, challenges, or questions in the Chemistry Classroom.
Remember, buying a copy of the lab book Chemistry on a Budget can be very useful to your Chemistry classroom with labs and class article ideas.
Have a great weekend!