# Determination of the Specific Heat of Zinc Metal

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LAB 7: “Determination of the Specific Heat of Zinc Metal” Objective: Calculate the specific heat of zinc. Introduction: Heat energy in solid is due to the kinetic energy of vibration atoms that make up the materials. As the atoms wiggle about their equilibrium points, they act like springs moving masses back and forth. Even though the masses of these atoms are small, there are a lot of them and all can “store” energy in their motions. We can increase the thermal energy of an object by heating it up. We do this every day when we boil water or cook food. It takes energy to increase the temperature of an object. The energy is also dependent on exactly what object we are heating. For instance it takes much longer more energy to raise 1 gr. of water 1 than it does 1 gr. of silver. The equation of energy required is given as: Heat energy required (Joules) = (Mass of object) (Specific Heat)(Change in T) Or, as many book list it: Which says that the change in thermal heat energy going into an object shows up as an increase in temperature, .We have to be careful because the mass of the object we are heating is important as well. The term Cp is the specific heat of the material (at constant atmospheric pressure). Different materials have different specific heat values. The units of specific heat are : Joules/gram deg – C. In this lab we will find the specific heat value of Zinc and compare it to accepted values.This will do by heating a mass of Zinc up to the temperature of boiling water and placing the hot metal into a cup of cold water. The thermal energy that the zinc loses goes into heating up the water in the cup. By knowing the starting temperatures and the final temperature of the water and the zinc, the specific heat of Zinc may be easily obtained. Placing this on a math footing, we find that the heat lost by the hot metal is