Biology Heat Loss Practical Write Up

Biology Coursework Practical – Heat Loss
The aim of this practical is to find to what extent does the surface area to volume ratio of an object affect the rate of heat loss from the object
Hypothesis: As the ratio of surface area to volume of an object decreases the rate of heat loss from the object will also decrease. Objects with the same surface area to volume ratios loose heat at the same rate so long as there are not other variables involved.
Background Knowledge:
The surface area to volume ratio of an object is determined by dividing the surface area by the volume and putting it into a ratio of one.
e.g. A flask of volume 200cm3 and a surface area of 160cm2 will have a surface area ...

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area to volume ratio decreases so in this example it is very likely that the two flasks in question are different shapes.
In this experiment the two flasks which will be used will different surface area to volume ratios as follows:

100 cm3 flask: Volume = 100, Surface Area = 115. Surface Area to Volume Ratio =

---- : 1 = 1.15 : 1
500 cm3 flask: Volume = 500, Surface area = 330. Surface Area to Volume Ratio =

---- : 1 = 0.66 : 1
As it is seen the ratio is lower in the 500 cm3 flask. This means that the rate of heat loss should be less than the 100 cm3 flask.
Heat is lost by three different processes:
* Conduction
* Convection
* Radiation..
Conduction is the process by which heat is transferred from on solid to another. When a solid is heated the molecules inside, which are normally almost static, start to vibrate. When another solid is brought into contact with the heated solid the energy from the vibrating molecules at the ...

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radiation, there is a degree of inefficiency which results with not all the heat being transferred. As in this experiment we will be using water in a glass container the effect of the heat having to change from a liquid to a solid to a gas will have a slight effect on the readings taken however this probably will not have a very significant effect.


For this experiment two flasks will be set up. They will have volumes of 100 and 500 cm3. These will be attached to a clamp stand and then filled with warm water. Warm water will be used as then less time will be required to heat the water to the desired temperature of 90oC. One the flasks have been filled they will be heated to ...

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Biology Heat Loss Practical Write Up. (2008, January 17). Retrieved December 15, 2018, from
"Biology Heat Loss Practical Write Up.", 17 Jan. 2008. Web. 15 Dec. 2018. <>
"Biology Heat Loss Practical Write Up." January 17, 2008. Accessed December 15, 2018.
"Biology Heat Loss Practical Write Up." January 17, 2008. Accessed December 15, 2018.
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Added: 1/17/2008 06:23:04 PM
Category: Science & Nature
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1982
Pages: 8

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