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Abstract

This science fair project was performed to find out what conditions will make tablets dissolve faster. The experiment involved using Alka-Seltzer antacid tablets, water and hydrochloric acid at different temperatures.

Hypothesis

The Alka-Seltzer antacid tablet will dissolve most quickly in a hydrochloric acid solution and at the highest temperature.

Scientific Terms

Antacid, heartburn, pH, sodium bicarbonate, citric acid

Background

Dissolving Alka-Seltzer

Alka-Seltzer is an antacid medication used for relief of heartburn and neutralizing stomach acid. The pH level in our stomach is normally between 2 to 3. The food that we eat will enter the stomach where acid is then secreted to help in its digestion. When too much food is eaten, even more acid is produced. At times, the pH level falls below 2. This is the cause of the heartburn.

Alka-Seltzer tablets consist of aspirin, sodium bicarbonate and citric acid. As an antacid the tablet will provide quick pain relief and help to raise the pH level in the stomach to between 3 or 4.

Alka-Seltzer medication is taken by dissolving the tablet in water and drinking it. Once the tablet is placed in the water, the citric acid will dissolve in water, making it acidic. The acidic solution will react with the sodium bicarbonate and release carbon dioxide. The releasing of carbon dioxide gas will create fizzy bubbles in the drink. The mixture is then drunk to reduce stomach discomfort and to neutralize stomach acids.

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Complexity level:
7
Project cost ($):
10
Time required:
1 hour to prepare, 2 hours for the science project experiment
Material availability:
May be purchased at a chemist
Safety concerns:

Basic safety requirements