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Others Like “Crime Scene Chemistry: Determine the Identity of an Unknown Chemical Substance”

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Science Fair Project Idea
When you burn a piece of wood, you start with wood and oxygen, and end up with ashes, carbon dioxide, and water vapor. At no time during the reaction does wood reappear, even momentarily, from the ashes. Most chemical reactions are like this; they move in one direction, from reactants (starting chemicals) to products. In this chemistry science project, you will experiment with a rare and exotic reaction that oscillates. The reaction products appear and disappear for a number of cycles. Because… Read more
Chem_p097
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites A class in chemistry would be helpful, but is not required.
Material Availability You will need to order the Oscillating Chemical Reaction Kit online. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Adult supervision is required. Minor injury is possible. Be sure to wear safety goggles.
Science Fair Project Idea
The iodine clock reaction is a favorite demonstration reaction in chemistry classes. Two clear liquids are mixed, resulting in another clear liquid. After a few seconds, the solution suddenly turns dark blue. The reaction is called a clock reaction because the amount of time that elapses before the solution turns blue depends on the concentrations of the starting chemicals. In this chemistry science fair project, you will explore factors that affect the rate of the iodine clock reaction. Read more
Chem_p091
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites You should be attending or already have taken an introductory chemistry class. This science fair project requires careful attention to detail and will involve some creative problem solving and independent research on your part.
Material Availability You will need to order a chemical kinetics kit online. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Wear safety goggles when working with all chemicals. Hydrochloric acid is corrosive to hands and eyes. Wear splash goggles and gloves when handling acids.
Science Fair Project Idea
Solar cells are popping up on rooftops everywhere these days and are a model for clean, renewable energy. Did you ever look at those solar panels and wonder how we can get electricity produced by solar cells when the sun is not shining? It is a great question because solar panels do not produce electricity when it is dark outside. One strategy to overcome this challenge is to store the energy produced by solar cells during the day in the form of a fuel that can be used at a later time. In… Read more
Chem_p099
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Completion of a basic chemistry class is recommended before trying this science project. You should also know something about circuits, or use the [# ProjectGuide Name="Advanced.ElectronicsPrimerIntroduction" Value="HtmlAnchor" HtmlText="Science Buddies Electronics Primer" #].
Material Availability A number of specialty items are required. For your convenience a kit is available for purchase from the .
Cost Very High (over $150)
Safety Adult supervision is recommended. Use caution when connecting the four 9V batteries. Ensure that the wires/connectors do not come in contact with each other to cause a short or the batteries will become VERY hot and can possibly cause burns. Cobalt nitrate can cause skin and eye irritation. It is recommended to wear disposable gloves when handling cobalt nitrate.
Science Fair Project Idea
Every criminal leaves behind evidence at the crime scene. The trick to catching the criminal is collecting all of the evidence and making sense of it. This is what the forensic expert does. In this science project you will be correlating the size of blood stains to the distance they fell, but do not get too grossed out. You will be doing it with fake blood. If you like figuring out mysteries, this is the science project for you! Read more
Phys_p066
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Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety This topic can be a little scary. If you are squeamish, you may want to choose another topic. Adult supervision is required when doing background research, especially online, on this topic.
Science Fair Project Idea
Many essential chemical reactions and natural biochemical processes occur in liquid solutions, so understanding the chemical properties of liquid solutions is fundamentally important. This project asks the basic question, how much of a substance can dissolve in water, for three different substances: ordinary table salt, Epsom salts, and sugar. Read more
Chem_p050
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Carbonated bevarages are quite popular in the United States (despite the health risks of drinking too much of the sugary ones). Many people love them their their bubbly, fizzy flavors. But how do the bubbles, fizz, and taste get into the water? In this cooking and food science project, you will work with baking soda, citric acid, and sweetener to create a your own soda pop. Once you develop your recipe, try it out on your friends and family. Who knows? You might create the next soda pop… Read more
FoodSci_p070
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You will need to purchase citric acid at a specialty store or online. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
When biologists want to separate different pieces of DNA, RNA, or proteins they use a technique called gel electrophoresis. In this science project you'll build a gel electrophoresis chamber and use it to discover how many components are in different colors of food coloring dye. Read more
BioChem_p028
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever experienced heartburn after eating a large, greasy meal? Or have you heard of someone complaining about heartburn pains? It's very common; over 60 million people in the U.S. have heartburn at least once every month. Heartburn pain usually results from stomach acids escaping from the stomach and irritating the esophagus above it. Luckily, there are medical drugs, called antacids, which can help relieve heartburn pain. But how do antacids work, and how effective are they? In this… Read more
BioMed_p010
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Wear safety goggles and gloves and have an adult help you when handling and working with the artificial stomach acid solution. Hydrochloric acid is corrosive to hands and eyes.
Science Fair Project Idea
You have probably heard the saying that "water and electricity don't mix." Well, in this chemistry science fair project you will mix them, to create two solutions, one basic and one acidic. The apparatus is very simple, but the chemistry is complex and offers many avenues for exploration. Read more
Chem_p087
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites You should know what the pH scale is, and what current and voltage measure in a circuit.
Material Availability A pH meter is required for this project. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Minor injury is possible. Be careful not to short out the battery, as it may get very hot.
Science Fair Project Idea
There is evidence to be gathered at every crime scene. The hard part is making sense of it all. That's where crime scene investigators and forensic scientists come in. In this science fair project, you will investigate blood spatter using fake blood. Your job, as an impartial scientist, is to deliver facts so that justice can be served. Are you up to the challenge? Read more
Phys_p072
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- Less Details
Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites Basic knowledge of trigonometry is required. For a refresher, check out the trigonometry reference listed in the Bibliography.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety This topic of inquiry can be a little scary. If you are at all squeamish, then do not attempt to research the topic or do this science fair project. Always have an adult with you when you are doing your research, especially if you are doing research online. Adult supervision is required.
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