Metal Activity

Recently we did an activity that tested the reactivity of a couple different metals.

Using a 24 well plate we filled up 12 of the sections. We used three rows of four and labeled them A, B, and C. Row A contained copper wire, row B was filled with magnesium ribbon, and row C had zinc granules in it. The metal liquids we tested with these substances were Copper (II) Nitrate, Magnesium Nitrate, Zin Nitrate, and Silver Nitrate.

We put eight drops of Copper (II) Nitrate (Cu2+No3 1-) liquid into the first column of rows A, B, and C.  The copper changed color, the magnesium bubbled, changed colors, and began to rust, and finally, the zinc became sticky and changed color.

For the second column we tested how the metals would react with Magnesium Nitrate (Mg2+ No3 1-) liquid. This time, none of the metals had a reaction with the liquid metal.

Next, we added liquid Zinc Nitrate (Zn2++ No3 1-) to the third column. The copper wire and zinc granules did not react to the liquid. However, the Magnesium ribbon changed color.

Finally, we adding the Silver Nitrate (Ag1+ No3 1-) liquid to the last column. All of the metals had a color change, but a couple had something more. The copper wire became kind of powdery and the magnesium ribbon began to bubble and then change to being a little bit powdery.

Here is a picture of what the end products looked like:



At the end of testing all the metals we did a conclusion answering questions.

1. Write the correct formulas for the compounds: Copper (II) Nitrate – Cu2No3    Magnesium nitrate – MgNo3    Zinc Nitrate – ZnNo3     Silver Nitrate – AgNO3

2. Which of the three metals reaction with the largest number of solutions? Magnesium

3. Which of the three metals reaction with the smallest number of solutions? Copper

4. List the metals from the most active to the least. Magnesium, Zinc, Silver, and Copper

5. The State of Liberty is made out of copper. Why was this a good choice? Copper is the least reactive

6. Gold does not react with any of the solutions you used today. What does tis tell you about gold’s placement in the activity series? Gold is closer to the least reactive area.

7. Lead is less reactive than zinc but more active than copper. What will happen when lead metal is placed in separate solutions of zinc nitrate and copper (II) nitrate? Lead will not react to zinc but will react to copper.

8. What will happen to a copper penny that placed in a solution of lead (II) nitrate? Why? There will be no reactions because lead is stronger than copper.

9. Write a metal activity series of these five metals. List the most active first. Na, Ni, Sn. Pb. Ag

In conclusion we figured out what metal was stronger than the either and what reaction it causes.


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