Something Cool I Did in Analytical Chemistry

September 27, 2010

Dissolving calcium carbonate (aka chalk) is cooler than I thought it would be. One drop of concentrated hydrochloric acid makes it go *ffzzz*. Another drop and *fzzz*. A squirt makes large bubbles and *ffffzzzzzzzzzzzz*. And after I put in the entire 3 mL capacity of the plastic pipette, I swirled around the solution, and there were even more *ffzzz*! Internally, I was giggling after every *fffzzz*. At first, the powder looked like it was being bombarded by bombs. Then it looked like paste. Then, it looked like milk. Now it is looking like murky white water. Except  now, the fascination of hearing the *fzzz* is gone and replaced with boredom as I get tired of sitting behind the fume hood with the stuffy neoprene glove dripping acid and drop at a time for 1 hour all so that I can dissolve just a handful of white powder. And guess what? It takes forever to dissolve that thing. Not cool.