Aim: To investigate the reactivity of metals by observing single displacement reactions.
- Copper(II) sulfate solution (CuSO4)
- Magnesium sulfate solution (MgSO4)
- Zinc sulfate solution (ZnSO4)
- Iron sulfate solution (FeSO4)
- Lead nitrate solution (Pb(NO3)2)
- Silver nitrate solution (AgNO3)
- Aluminum foil (Al)
- Zinc foil (Zn)
- Copper wire (Cu)
- Iron nail (Fe)
- Lead sheet (Pb)
- Test tubes
- Stirring rod
- Safety goggles
- Lab coat
- Wear safety goggles and a lab coat before starting the experiment.
- Label six test tubes as A, B, C, D, E, and F.
- Pour 2 ml of copper(II) sulfate solution into test tube A.
- Pour 2 ml of magnesium sulfate solution into test tube B.
- Pour 2 ml of zinc sulfate solution into test tube C.
- Pour 2 ml of iron sulfate solution into test tube D.
- Pour 2 ml of lead nitrate solution into test tube E.
- Pour 2 ml of silver nitrate solution into test tube F.
- Cut a small piece of aluminum foil, zinc foil, copper wire, iron nail, and lead sheet, each measuring approximately 2 cm in length.
- Add a small piece of aluminum foil to each of the six test tubes (A-F), measuring approximately 2 cm in length.
- Observe the reactions for 10 minutes and record any observations.
- Repeat the experiment with the other metals (zinc foil, copper wire, iron nail, and lead sheet) by adding a piece of the metal to each test tube in separate trials.
- Note any changes in colour, the formation of a precipitate, or gas evolution.
- Clean up the experiment by disposing of the chemicals and washing the glassware with soap and water.
- Wear safety goggles and a lab coat to protect eyes and clothing from chemical spills.
- Handle chemicals with care and avoid contact with skin and eyes.
- Use gloves when handling metals to avoid cuts and scratches.
- Dispose of chemicals properly according to local regulations.
- Do not ingest any chemicals or metals used in the experiment.
- Be aware that some of the reactions may produce gas, which can be hazardous if inhaled. Ensure good ventilation during the experiment.
Write a balanced symbol equation for each of the reactions that were successful. Here are two examples.
Fe(s) + CuSO4(aq) -> Cu(s) + FeSO4(aq)
This equation represents the successful displacement reaction of iron with copper(II) sulfate, producing copper and iron(II) sulfate.
Cu(s) + FeSO4(aq) → No reaction
This equation represents an unsuccessful displacement reaction of copper with iron(II) sulfate. There is no reaction or observable change, indicating that copper is not reactive enough to displace iron from iron(II) sulfate.
Did your results for aluminium turn out as expected? Investigate why the results turned out differently than expected.