Balloon Science: Inviting Chemistry and Physics to the Party Documents

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Balloon Science: Inviting Chemistry and Physics to the Party 

written by Rebecca Vieyra

In this interdisciplinary lab, students integrate chemistry and physics concepts by measuring the volume of helium gas in an irregularly-shaped Mylar balloon. The lab provides a simple way for students to investigate Archimedes' Principle and the Ideal Gas Laws. Advanced classes can perform detailed uncertainty analysis and correct the gas constant to account for moisture in the air. At either level, the lab allows learners to calculate the volume of an irregular shape with an uncertainty of less than 2%.

See Related Materials for a direct link to the journal on which this lesson is based, published in 2013 in The Physics Teacher journal.

Published March 14, 2016
Last Modified August 17, 2016

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Primary Documents (2)

Teacher's Guide: Modifiable Word Document 

by Rebecca Vieyra

Customize and print your lesson.

Published March 14, 2016
Last Modified August 17, 2016

This file has previous versions.

Student Worksheet: Balloon Science 

by Rebecca Vieyra

Printable data tables and problem set

Published March 14, 2016
Last Modified July 28, 2016