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Ignition of Thermite Using the Potassium Chlorate “Rocket” Reaction: A Systematic Demonstration of Reaction Chemistry

McGuire, Brett A. and Carroll, P. Brandon and Boynton, Adam N. and Mendez, Jeffrey M. and Blake, Geoffrey A. (2015) Ignition of Thermite Using the Potassium Chlorate “Rocket” Reaction: A Systematic Demonstration of Reaction Chemistry. Journal of Chemical Education, 92 (6). pp. 1117-1120. ISSN 0021-9584. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20150724-091906333

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Abstract

Presented here is a set of demonstrations that are used as visual tools for engaging students in a discussion of reaction chemistry and thermodynamics. Students are first shown a series of simple exothermic reactions: (1) the reaction of H_2SO_4 with sugar, (2) the decomposition of KClO_3, and (3) the reaction of H_2SO_4 with KClO_3. These three basic reactions are then combined as a pyrotechnic chlorate demonstration in which H_2SO_4 is used to ignite a KClO_3 + sugar mixture. It is finally shown that this latter reaction is very effective for igniting the highly exothermic thermite redox reaction.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ed500522cDOIArticle
http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/ed500522cPublisherArticle
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
McGuire, Brett A.0000-0003-1254-4817
Carroll, P. Brandon0000-0002-3191-5401
Boynton, Adam N.0000-0003-4427-513X
Blake, Geoffrey A.0000-0003-0787-1610
Additional Information:© 2014 American Chemical Society and Division of Chemical Education, Inc. Published: December 22, 2014. B.A.M. gratefully acknowledges funding from a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. At the time of publication, B.A.M. was a Jansky Fellow at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory.
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSF Graduate Research FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:First Year Undergraduate/General, High School/Introductory Chemistry, Demonstrations, Physical Chemistry, Hands-On Learning/Manipulatives, Reactions, Kinetics, Thermodynamics, Oxidation/Reduction
Issue or Number:6
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20150724-091906333
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20150724-091906333
Official Citation:Ignition of Thermite Using the Potassium Chlorate “Rocket” Reaction: A Systematic Demonstration of Reaction Chemistry Brett A. McGuire, P. Brandon Carroll, Adam N. Boynton, Jeffrey M. Mendez, and Geoffrey A. Blake Journal of Chemical Education 2015 92 (6), 1117-1120 DOI: 10.1021/ed500522c
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:59002
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:24 Jul 2015 19:02
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 08:42

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