Activity

Combustion of ethanol in a jug

Summary
Burn ethanol in a jug to make a blue flame and a sound.
Science content
Chemistry: Chemical Changes (2, 7)
Physics: Energy forms, Conservation of Energy (1, 3, 4, 5)
Lessons activity is in
Materials
  • large heat proof flask or jug
  • 95% ethanol
  • long handled lighter
  • safety goggles and a good distance between the activity and students
Procedure

Add a little ethanol to the jug.
Swirl it around to coat the sides and evaporate into the volume of the flask.
Ignite at the top.

Discuss the chemistry of the reaction:
ethanol + oxygen -> water and CO2
Model the chemistry of the combustion reaction

Grades taught
Gr 4
Gr 5
Teaching site
ingridscience afterschool