Identifying The Unknown Ionic Compound As Potassium Nitrate Essay

2336 Words Nov 17th, 2016 10 Pages
Identifying the Unknown Ionic Compound as Potassium Nitrate
Arisbeth Carrillo*, Colette Harris, Nydia Garcia, Hannah Carroll, and Ratnamala Mandal
Introduction
The identification of unknown compounds is useful in real world issues because it allows scientists to determine the culprit in cases like food contamination or water pollution which cause harm to a large population. The project conducted was broken down into three parts, forming a cation logic tree, forming an anion logic tree, and finally identifying an unknown compound, which in this case proved to be potassium nitrate. The logic trees were generated using the elimination and confirmation tests as well as observations for both anions and cations to determine the cation and anions present in the unknown salt to determine its identity.
Materials and Methods for Part One
The elimination tests were performed simultaneously for the cations potassium, zinc(II), copper(II), and cobalt(II). Ten drops of each metal solution were added to the appropriate labeled centrifuge tubes and the color of each metal solution was recorded. The metal hydroxide test, was performed by adding 6 M NaOH dropwise to each tube, without exceeding twenty drops, until a precipitate. All observations were recorded for each cation solution. Ten more drops of 6 M NaOH were added to the solutions that contained a precipitate to test for amphoteric species. Once more, observations were recorded and the contents of all the centrifuge tubes were…

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