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Materials

The materials required for this science fair project:

-    3 conical flasks
-    3 corks
-    1 electric drill with appropriate sized bits
-    3 thermometers
-    1 roll of aluminum foil
-    1 roll of plastic wrap
-    1 bottle of ice water
-    1 measuring cylinder
-    1 clock

Procedure

1.    For this science fair project, the independent variable is the type of food wrapper used to insulate the cold water – none vs. aluminum foil vs. plastic wrap. The dependent variable is the temperature of the water in the conical flask. This is determined by measuring the temperature of the water with a thermometer. The constants (control variables) are the type and size of the conical flask, the amount of water in the flask and the room temperature.

2.    The electric drill is used to make a hole in the middle of each of the 3 corks. The size of the hole should be approximately the same as the diameter of the thermometer. The 3 thermometers are inserted into the holes in the cork.

3.    The 3 conical flasks are filled with the same amount of ice water. The conical flasks are sealed with the corks and the thermometers are inserted into the corks. The thermometers are adjusted such that the tips of each thermometer touches the ice water in each flask.

4.    One of the conical flasks is wrapped with 10 layers of aluminum foil and another conical flask is wrapped with 10 layers of plastic wrap. The 3rd conical flask is the control and is not wrapped with any insulator. Ensure that you wrap each flask tightly, without leaving any air pockets in between the layers.

5.    Start the clock and observe the temperature of the water in the 3 flasks every 30 minutes for the next 2 hours. The observed temperatures are recorded in the table given below.
 

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Complexity level:
4
Project cost ($):
20
Time required:
1 hour to prepare, 2 hours to perform the science project experiment
Material availability:
Very easily found. You will be able to find most of your materials at a local grocery store/supermarket. If you can't find conical flasks, you can improvise and use 3 large identical mugs
Safety concerns:

Basic safety requirements