To find the most efficient but simple method of keeping a Hot Water Tank Warm for 20 minutes

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AimMy aim is to find the easiest yet most successful way to keep a Hot Water Tank warm for 20 minutes.Scientific BackgroundHeat flows when there is a difference in temperature. It flows from the hotter region to the cooler region therefore making both regions equal in temperature. There are three ways in which this can happen.1-ConductionConduction is when vibrating particles pass on their extra vibration to their neighbouring particles.

This only happens in solids e.g. a wooden spoon.2-ConvectionConvection is when a liquid or a gas moves from a hotter region to a cooler region e.g.

water.3-RadiationThis happens through waves. Radiation waves only travel in vacuums e.g. from the sun to earth.InsulatorsThese are different materials that allow different amounts of energy to travel through them.

A good conductor is that which allows heat to flow through it easily. A bad conductor is that which doesn’t allow heat to flow through it easily.EvaporationThis is when a liquid changes state into a gas. Boiling a liquid normally does this.

VariablesIndependent variables are the ones that I cannot keep at a certain amount. Dependent variables are the ones that I have to keep at a certain amount.PredictionMy prediction is that wool will be the best insulator as it has a lot of air pockets so that it can trap in the heat.MethodFirst I will measure 1l of water in a measuring cylinder. Then I will boil this water in a kettle.

After having boiled the water I will cut up the coverings and sellotape them onto the sides of the beaker. I will cover 1 beaker with wool, 1 beaker with bubble wrap, 1 beaker with aluminium foil and leave one beaker uncovered. I will then pour 250ml of water into each beaker. I will leave the beakers standing for 20 minutes using a stopwatch and note the difference in temperature after every 2 minutes.

Finally I will repeat the whole experiment.Fair TestTo make this test fair firstly I will make sure that all the water is at the same temperature to begin with and there is the same amount of water. I will also make sure that they are all left together in the same room so that the temperature around them will be the same. Finally I shall do this experiment twice to ensure that I obtain accurate results.

EquipmentFour beakers, thermometer, water, kettle, aluminium foil, wool, bubble wrap, stopwatch, measuring cylinder, paper towel, and scissorsApparatusSafetyTo make this experiment safe I should make sure I hold the water and the hot plastic beaker with care as it could burn me. We should make sure all hair and scarves are tied properly so they do not get in the way.Obtaining ResultsTable of ResultsAnalysisGraph of ResultsConclusionsAfter having analysed my results I have come to realise that aluminium foil is a better insulator than the rest. I had predicted wool to be the best but it seems that as aluminium foil has a shiny surface, it reflects back the heat and the energy released from the beaker. Bubble wrap was the next best way of insulation then wool and finally leaving the beaker uncovered was the worst method of insulation.

I think my prediction was wrong as a shiny surface is a better way of insulation than using air pockets to trap in heat.Looking at my results it seems likely that if the time were changed I would end up with different results. For example if the time was 6 minutes wool and aluminium would have both been the best and maybe if we timed it for a bit longer there would also have been a change in my results.There are no anomalies in my work.EvaluationAccuracy and ReliabilityI feel that I could have made my results more accurate by taking the temperature more often e.

g. every minute. I could have also used a proper water tank instead of using a plastic beaker. Overall I think the reliability of my results is fair but improvements could have been made to make it a 100 per cent accurate.

ImprovementsImprovements could have been made by lengthening the overall time or by shortening it. I could also have done this experiment three times to see if there was a difference in the results and to also make it more accurate. I don’t think any more repeats than three would really make a difference to the outcome.Extending the InvestigationI could extend the investigation by combining one or more ways of insulation to see the outcome e.g. wool and bubble wrap (as shown above).

I could also have experimented with more different types of insulation. Instead of using a plastic beaker I could have used a glass or metal one to see if there was a difference in the results.

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