Basic Chemistry Thermodynamics: Solve the challenge of storing renewable energy
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About Basic Chemistry Thermodynamics: Solve the challenge of storing renewable energy Virtual Lab Simulation
This is the full-length “Basic Chemistry Thermodynamics” simulation. For shorter, more targeted versions, see the Related simulations below.
Energy is one of the great subject matters of our time, but what is energy actually? In this simulation you will learn the fundamental thermodynamic concepts of enthalpy, entropy and Gibbs free energy. You will also determine the internal energy of a chemical compound by using bomb calorimetry, and you’ll even travel inside the calorimeter to see it in action!
The challenge of storing energy
What is the best way to store energy? There is no simple answer, but in this simulation, you will be encouraged to give it some thought while learning about the very nature of energy and how it connects to chemical reactions. You will assess whether the gasoline component octane is a suitable chemical for energy storage by using a bomb calorimeter.
The fundamental concepts of thermodynamics
The first and second laws of thermodynamics and the core concepts of enthalpy, entropy and Gibbs free energy are introduced in this simulation. You can play around with the energy levels of reactants and products on a virtual energy surface to learn about endothermic and exothermic reactions. The concept of reaction spontaneity is linked to the concept of Gibbs free energy and its temperature dependence is explored in an interactive game. You will have access to a state-of-the-art bomb calorimeter and can travel inside to see it in action, in order to really be able to understand how it works. From here the concept of chemical bond energy is linked to the thermodynamic calculations of enthalpy on the calorimeter output.
Combine theory and practice
Throughout the simulation you will combine the fundamental teachings of thermodynamics with the experimental results from the calorimeter.
Will you be able to suggest a solution for the energy storage challenge?
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Techniques in Lab
At the end of this simulation, you will be able to…
- Define the core thermodynamics concepts of entropy, enthalpy, and free Gibbs energy, and their units
- Explain the first and second laws of thermodynamics
- Understand and apply the concept of reaction spontaneity
- Explain the differences between the enthalpy of combustion, and enthalpy of formation
- Understand the relationship between internal energy and enthalpy
- Present Hess’s law in connection with performing enthalpy change calculations
- Present the concepts of exothermic and endothermic reactions
Examples of Related Standards
Life sciences and Chemistry related 1st Year
HS-PS3-1, HS-PS3-2, HS-PS3-3, HS-PS3-4, HS-PS2-1, HS-PS2-2
5.1 Measuring energy changes
5.2 Hess’s Law
5.3 Bond enthalpies
6.1 Endothermic and Exothermic Processes
6.2 Energy Diagrams
6.3 Heat Transfer and Thermal Equilibrium
6.4 Heat Capacity and Calorimetry
6.6 Introduction to Enthalpy of Reaction
6.7 Bond Enthalpies
6.8 Enthalpy of Formation
6.9 Hess’s Law
9.3 Gibbs Free Energy and Thermodynamic Favorability
9.5 Free Energy and Equilibrium
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