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Abstract

Jennifer Oxner

The purpose of the experiment was to determine if the shade of human hair has an effect on its ability to insulate the human body. Based on background information, the hypothesis of the experiment was that darker shaded hair would insulate better than light shaded hair.

Hair was collected from a barber shop. The hair was separated by shade at the barber shop. Twenty grams of the dark shaded hair was measured, as well as twenty grams of the light shaded hair, separately. The hair was placed in two different paper bags. The bags were closed, labeled, and set aside. The process was repeated, measuring forty grams of each shade of hair and placing the hair in two bags; the bags were closed, labeled, and set aside. Sixty grams of each shade of hair was measured, placed in bags; the bags were closed, labeled, and set aside. Each time, the bags were labeled according to the measurement and shade. The bag containing twenty grams of the dark shaded hair was placed on the table and the twenty gram bag of light hair was placed forty centimeters to the side of that bag. The heat lamp was placed thirty centimeters in front of the bags and in the center. The tips of the thermometers were placed under the paper bags. The heat lamp was carefully switched on. The temperatures were recorded at two minute intervals for ten minutes. The steps were repeated for the forty gram bags, and the sixty gram bags. The experiment was conducted three times. The temperatures were averaged and compared.

The results from the experiment did support the hypothesis. The dark shaded hair did insulate better than the light shaded hair. The bags containing the dark hair created the greatest temperatures, whereas the bags containing the light hair created the lowest temperatures.

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