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written by Dean Baird
This inquiry-based classroom lab investigates of the nature of heating and cooling by thermal absorption and emission.  Using temperature probes connected to computer USB interfaces, the students examine the effects of radiant heat on three metal cans of varying colors.  The lesson plan is detailed and thorough, giving explanations of how to use computer tools to graph results of the experiment.  The lab is a true integration of technology and physics education.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Thermo & Stat Mech
- Thermal Properties of Matter
- High School
- Instructional Material
= Laboratory
= Lesson/Lesson Plan
Appropriate Courses Categories Ratings
- Conceptual Physics
- Algebra-based Physics
- AP Physics
- Lesson Plan
- Laboratory
- New teachers
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© 2002 Dean Baird
They may be used by teachers and students for classroom instruction. Beyond that, no part of these documents may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the author.
heat, thermal absorption, thermal properties, thermal radiation
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created July 18, 2006 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
August 14, 2016 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
January 1, 2004

This resource is part of a Physics Front Topical Unit.

Topic: Heat and Temperature
Unit Title: The Relationship Between Heat and Temperature

In this investigation, students explore thermal absorption by using temperature probes connected to computer USB interfaces to examine the effects of radiant heat on three metal cans of varying colors. Step-by-step directions make the set-up easy.

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AIP Format
D. Baird, (2002), WWW Document, (https://www.arborsci.com/Labs/NewCP_PDF/Heat/Canned_Heat-Absorb.pdf).
D. Baird, TechLab: Canned Heat (2002), <https://www.arborsci.com/Labs/NewCP_PDF/Heat/Canned_Heat-Absorb.pdf>.
APA Format
Baird, D. (2004, January 1). TechLab: Canned Heat. Retrieved May 26, 2024, from https://www.arborsci.com/Labs/NewCP_PDF/Heat/Canned_Heat-Absorb.pdf
Chicago Format
Baird, Dean. TechLab: Canned Heat. January 1, 2004. https://www.arborsci.com/Labs/NewCP_PDF/Heat/Canned_Heat-Absorb.pdf (accessed 26 May 2024).
MLA Format
Baird, Dean. TechLab: Canned Heat. 2002. 1 Jan. 2004. 26 May 2024 <https://www.arborsci.com/Labs/NewCP_PDF/Heat/Canned_Heat-Absorb.pdf>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Dean Baird", Title = {TechLab: Canned Heat}, Volume = {2024}, Number = {26 May 2024}, Month = {January 1, 2004}, Year = {2002} }
Refer Export Format

%A Dean Baird %T TechLab: Canned Heat %D January 1, 2004 %U https://www.arborsci.com/Labs/NewCP_PDF/Heat/Canned_Heat-Absorb.pdf %O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source %A Baird, Dean %D January 1, 2004 %T TechLab: Canned Heat %V 2024 %N 26 May 2024 %8 January 1, 2004 %9 application/pdf %U https://www.arborsci.com/Labs/NewCP_PDF/Heat/Canned_Heat-Absorb.pdf

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