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Thermal Physics
 
Aim: to measure the Specific Latent Heat of Fusion of Water
See Specific Latent Heat
 
Method
The method proposed here consists of adding ice, a small piece at a time, to warm water in a plastic cup and measuring the temperature change of the water when the ice has completely melted.
Ideally it would be best to use specially prepared small pieces of ice taken from a freezer of known temperature.
In practice, you will probably have to use broken up ice cubes... oh well, you can't always have everything, I suppose.
 
Precautions to help obtain an accurate result:
1. Make the initial temperature of the warm water about 10C above room temperature and the final temperature of water and melted ice about the same number of degrees below room temperature as the initial temperature was above room temperature. Why is this a good idea?
2. Keep the ice on paper towel or similar; you want to add ice, not water.
3. Use fairly small pieces of ice... but not too small.
Think about possible problems you might expect if the pieces are too big or too small.
   
Before starting, write list of all the results you will need to take during the experiment.
It is a good idea to try to write the list in the order that you will take the results.
Use the principle of conservation of energy to establish an equation to calculate the value of the specific latent heat.
 
One limitation of this simple method is that we have to assume that the ice is at zero degrees.
If it has just been taken out of the freezer, it will probably be at a lower temperature...
 
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