Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

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Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby shawnpark17 » Sat Oct 20, 2012 3:30 pm

Hello,

I'm doing a project on how temperature affects the decomposition of electrolytes in a sports drink. I now know how to test this and all that, but I stuck on research.
I can't find information on electrolyte decomposition that I can understand. Can anybody help me in telling me how electrolytes degrade and where I can find this information (book or website, please) Thank You!!!!!

shawnpark17
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Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 3:15 pm
Occupation: Student: 8th grade
Project Question: How sunlight affects the decomposition of electrolytes in Gatorade
Project Due Date: January 7, 2013
Project Status: I am conducting my research

Re: Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby Goldenzenith » Sun Oct 21, 2012 10:03 pm

Hi shawnpark17,

I'm no particular expert on the specific topic of electrolysis, or electrolytic decomposition, but I did manage to find some sites with information you might be able to pick up relatively easily. (From my understanding, what you found earlier probably was a good deal of research articles, which do happen to be very technical.) The sites listed below have a bit of vocabulary that requires a little extra research on your part, but otherwise, they should be fine as a starting point:

http://peswiki.com/index.php/Electrolysis and http://www.talktalk.co.uk/reference/enc ... 07987.html.

Neither, however, specifically mentions sports drinks, so it'll be a bit difficult tying your research into your hypothesis, but let's wait for the input of other Experts!
Need an idea or some inspiration?
http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_ideas.shtml

Want to read up on awesome projects and science/math-related news?
http://www.sciencebuddies.org/blog/index.php

Enjoy! :D
-RM, Expert
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Re: Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby donnahardy2 » Mon Oct 22, 2012 7:16 am

Hi Shawnpark,

This is a really interesting idea for a science project, but I need more information about what you are thinking about doing. Goldenzenith has given you some good suggestions for starting on this project. I have some additional questions:

Are you planning to do this project?

http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-f ... p053.shtml

Electrolytes are ionic elements like sodium, potassium, and chloride that can be measured by a multimeter. These ions are very stable and would not degrade due to temperature. If you boiled the liquid until it evaporated, the electrolytes would be visible as a dry powder, but the ions would not be changed chemically. Temperature alone would not decompose the electrolytes.

Electrolysis involves using electrical current to decompose a molecule. For example, in this project on the Science Buddies website, electrolysis is used to convert water to hydrogen gas in a fuel cell.

http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-f ... p053.shtml

Please let us know what type of project you want to do.

Donna Hardy
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Re: Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby shawnpark17 » Wed Oct 24, 2012 6:30 pm

Hello. Thank you for replying and helping me out.

I have read the articles and am still researching on my topic, so thanks a lot for the articles.

I am still really undecided on the independent variable. I said temperature, but I only know 100% I will test
electrolyte decomposition and how to test it. I drew my project idea off of the Electrolyte Challenge.

Do you know what independent variable I could use if temperature does not affect electrolytes?
I really like this project and I've started research, so I was hoping to go along these lines.

Thank you,

shawnpark17
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Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 3:15 pm
Occupation: Student: 8th grade
Project Question: How sunlight affects the decomposition of electrolytes in Gatorade
Project Due Date: January 7, 2013
Project Status: I am conducting my research

Re: Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby donnahardy2 » Thu Oct 25, 2012 7:51 am

Hi Shawnpark,

In the electrolyte challenge project description, the type of drink, either orange juice or a sports drink are the independent variables and the conductivity measurement of the multimeter is the dependent variable. You could use different types of natural fruit juices or perhaps make your own sports drink as alternative independent variables.

If you vary the temperature, you would be testing the effect of temperature on conductivity measurement. This would be an interesting and very worthwhile study, but completely different than the electrolyte challenge project.

http://www.eutechinst.com/techtips/tech-tips44.htm

Donna Hardy
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Re: Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby shawnpark17 » Thu Oct 25, 2012 12:29 pm

Hello. Thanks once again for replying.

I was thinking about testing brands, but I decided not to do that because in the nutrition facts of drinks,
it shows the electrolytes (potassium, sodium, etc.) I felt that I shouldn't test what I know, so I was thinking along the lines of decomposition.

If temperature does not affect electrolytes and degrading, what does? I'm not pretty far in electrolyte research so I would like to focus on electrolytes.

Thanks once again for your help.

shawnpark17

P.S. If there is nothing that really affects electrolyte decomposition, I am happy to switch the type of project. I just really want to do something on electrolytes. Thanks!!!
shawnpark17
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 3:15 pm
Occupation: Student: 8th grade
Project Question: How sunlight affects the decomposition of electrolytes in Gatorade
Project Due Date: January 7, 2013
Project Status: I am conducting my research

Re: Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby Craig_Bridge » Thu Oct 25, 2012 1:29 pm

Decomposition of inorganic substances (chemical ions) just doesn't happen (unlike organic substances). The only ways that ions are removed from solution are via physical or chemical reactions. If you boil away the liquid in a distallation or evaporation process, the concentration of the ions can be increased beyond the amount that will say disolved and you will grow salt crystals composed of a positive and negative ion). Decreasing the temperature of a solution ususally reduces the solubility of the the ions and you will again grow crystals.
-Craig
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Re: Science Electrolyte Project Help!!!

Postby donnahardy2 » Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:03 pm

Hi,

Craig has given you a good explanation of why elements do not decompose. You have not had chemistry yet, but here is a periodic table that includes the electrolyte elements: sodium, potassium, and chloride (elements 11,17 and 19). These elements will always retain their protons in the atomic nucleus, and their intrinsic chemical properties, no matter what the temperature is.

http://www.chemicool.com/

So you could do the project as outlined, or test the response of the conductivity monitor at different temperatures. These would be perfectly acceptable experiments for a science project.

However, it sounds like you really would like to do a project that involves chemical reactions. Here is a list of chemistry project ideas from the Science Buddies website. Why don’t you look through the intermediate and advanced projects and decide if you want to change projects.

http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-f ... mediate&p=

Donna Hardy
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