Slime Lab Essay

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Ghostbuster Slime Lab 10/4/2012 Abstract The purpose of this experiment was to observe the physical properties and changes of the creation of a polymer as a result from cross-linking. A borax solution was made and was combined with a polyvinyl alcohol solution. A polymer’s cross-links give them many properties, like bonding ability, elasticity, and viscosity. The amount of water added in the experiment directly affected the viscosity and elasticity of the slime polymer. Too much water added resulted in a high viscosity and low elasticity. In order for the PVA and borax to turn into solutions, high temperatures were set. Room temperature was not enough to form solutions, which is why a stove was used. The borax solution was the cross-linking agent due to the formation of boric acid, which accepts the OH- molecule in the PVA solution. Hydrogen bonding linked the borax solution and PVA together. Introduction This lab focused on producing “Ghostbuster Slime,” made from mixing borax solution (sodium Borate) with polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) solution. The polymer was created as a result from cross-linking the two solutions. A polymer is a substance containing a molecular structure built by a very large number of similar units, or monomers, linked together. The linkage of polymers is a determining factor in the properties of a substance, such as solubility, elasticity, and viscosity. When they contain carbonyl groups, polymers can form hydrogen bonds with adjacent molecules, resulting in a stronger material on a larger scale. Polymers are used in many aspects of human life; natural polymers form vital tissue in organisms while synthetic polymers are used to create various types of plastics, concrete, glass, and rubbers. Cross-linking is a chemical process responsible for creating polymers by forming chains that connect adjacent atoms in a large
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