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Chemical Acitvity of Metals Lab Report

Essay by   •  February 7, 2012  •  Lab Report  •  1,793 Words (8 Pages)  •  1,786 Views

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Title: Chemical Activity of Metals

Purpose: To use the activity series of metals to arrange metals in the order of their chemical activity.

Materials and Safety: goggles, apron, well plate, Copper (II) sulfate, Potassium nitrate, Zinc acetate, Silver nitrate, Lead (II) nitrate, copper sample, magnesium sample, zinc sample, lead sample. Wear goggles at all times, wear apron at all times to prevent stains on clothes, be careful when working with the liquids that you don't spill or mix them, when disposing of the solutions and metals dump them in the trash can DO NOT POUR THEM DOWN THE DRAIN, after the lab make sure everyone in the lab group washes their hands.


1. Put on goggles and apron.

2. Label the wells in the well plate form left to right along the top row 1, 2,3,4,5. Label the rows down the left side A,B,C and D.

3. Place 8 drops of Copper II sulfate into each well across the first column.

4. Place 8 drops of Potassium nitrate into each well across the second column.

5. Place 8 drops of Zinc acetate into each well across the third column.

6. Place 8 drops of Silver nitrate into each well across the fourth column.

7. Place 8 drops of Lead nitrate into each well across the fourth column.

8. Place 2-3 pieces of copper metal into each of the wells in Row A.

9. Place 2-3 pieces of lead metal into each of the wells in Row B.

10. Place one piece of zinc metal into each of the wells in Row C.

11. Place one piece of magnesium into each of the wells in Row D.

12. Place the well plate on white paper so the changes are easier to observe.

13. Observe what happens for a few minutes. In the Data Table, record what happens to each metal. If a metal does not change, write "NR" for no reaction.

14. Look at the metal samples used and describe their appearance before anything was changed.

15. Dispose of all chemicals according to instructions from the teacher.


1 2 3 4 5

CuSO4 KNO3 Zn(C2H3O2)2 AgNO3 Pb(NO3)2





NR the sample developed a dark green substance around it that seemed like it would have a fur like texture; very mold like





NR It looked like the color started to melt off of the sample and it made a black ring around the lead ball which was still gray at the top


Zn light blue chunks that looked like cotton candy formed in the solution; nothing directly changed appearance of Zinc sample

NR Bottom of the sample in contact with solution turned jet black and eventually the solution was also an inky black color An extremely thin layer of a black fuzz like substance formed around the entire sample


Mg Small black bubbles immediately formed in the solution that slowly moved and attached to the Magnesium strip

NR Tiny black bubbles formed around the sample and made a thin black layer around the strip that looked like a fuzz Fuzzy black ring formed around the strip that was slightly thicker than the previous rxn, but still very thin light gray fuzzy substance formed around the strip immediately and never got darker or thicker

Appearance Of Metals

Before Rxn After CuSO4 After KNO3 After Zn(C2H3O2)2 After AgNO3 After Pb(NO3)2

Cu Shiny, brownish, circular Unchanged Unchanged Unchanged Dark green substance is produced Unchanged

Pb Round, dull gray, dark Unchanged Unchanged Unchanged Jet black substance is produced Unchanged

Zn Jagged light gray "chunks" with white streaks same, but caused light blue precipitate formation Unchanged Unchanged Dark black substance produced Black color produced

Mg Dull and gray, thin rectangular strip Small amount of black color substance Unchanged Black bubbles produced Black substance produced Light gray substance produced

Data Analysis:

1. What similarities and differences in physical properties do you see when you look at the metals? The majority of them are a dull gray color excluding copper which is shiny and copper colored. Both the copper and lead samples were round but magnesium was a rectangular strip and zinc had an irregular shape.

2. Which of the four metals reacted with the greatest number of solutions? Magnesium.

3. Which of the four metals reacted with the least number of solutions? Lead and Copper both reacted with one solution.

4. List the metals from the most active to the least active. Magnesium, Zinc, Lead and Copper.

5. The Statue of Liberty is made of copper. Use your investigation results to explain why copper is a better material for a statue than magnesium or zinc. Since copper doesn't react with a large number of solutions like Magnesium



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