- Heat Flow -

Your challenge is to detect the flow of heat energy. This is hard because you don't have a detector for heat flow. You will have to infer heat flow from what it does to temperature. The following list might give you some clues. Usually, heat loss will cool and heat gain will warm. So, if something heats up, it is good bet that heat energy flowed into it; if it cools down, it probably lost heat energy. It is this warming and cooling that you will use to infer heat flow. If "A" cools, it must have lost energy. If "B" warms it must have gained energy. If "A" and "B" are similar, then they might even cool and warm similar amounts.

Remember, your challenge is to INFER the flow of heat energy. Do this by measuring the temperature changes when there is energy flow between two objects. For your experiment to be convincing, the heat energy leaving "A" needs to be the heat that ends up in "B". You cannot have extra loss from "A" or other sources of heat for "B". Why is this important?

Set up your experiment:

Use a film can filled with hot water for "A". Use the same amount of cold water for "B".
How can you arrange for all the heat "A" looses to get into "B"? Hint 1
How can you be sure there is no other heat into "B"? Hint 2

Here is one way to measure the temperature inside the film can.

Figure M8
Film Can & Sensor
If you are using a plain thermometer, you can do the same with just one hole.

Now, to observe heat flow:

Figure M9
Heat Flow Apparatus
Prepare a Report: Review the questions, look at the suggestions for reporting, and prepare a report on heat flow.

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