Volcanic eruption

Today Robins watched what a volcanic eruption would be like… well we tried!

Using Ammonium Dichromate we tried to simulate a volcanic eruption.

By heating the bottom of the conical flask we simulated the heat built up inside a volcano. Usually when the Ammonium heats it flares giving a green gas as it ignites. The green gas is nitrogen and can be smelly, but we had glass wool plugging the top of the flask.

We did see some sparks and the chemical reaction did create a lot of smoke in the flask. Unfortunately because the Ammonium did not stay as one lump (it spread out a bit too thinly) it did not create a hugely exciting reaction.
Hopefully the next class to do it will get a better result and we can watch their attempt!

The chemical reaction left the Ammonium Dichromate as charred ash, just as you would see in a volcanic eruption.

We learnt that not all experiments will work first time, and that it is important to watch carefully as some chemical reactions are super fast. We did enjoy it though. It was a little bit like watching miniature fireworks in the flask! Another exciting science lesson in Robins class!

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