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Heat of Fusion for Ice

Experiment #4 from Chemistry with Vernier

Education Level
High School

Video Overview

Heat of Fusion for Ice


Melting and freezing behavior are among the characteristic properties that give a pure substance its unique identity. As energy is added, pure solid water (ice) at 0°C changes to liquid water at 0°C.

In this experiment, you will determine the energy (in joules) required to melt one gram of ice. You will then determine the molar heat of fusion for ice (in kJ/mol). Excess ice will be added to warm water, at a known temperature, in a Styrofoam cup. The warm water will be cooled down to a temperature near 0°C by the ice. The energy required to melt the ice is removed from the warm water as it cools.

To calculate the heat that flows from the water, you can use the relationship

q = {C_p} \cdot m \cdot \Delta t

where q stands for heat flow, Cp is specific heat, m is mass in grams, and Δt is the change in temperature. For water, Cp is 4.18 J/g°C.


In this experiment, you will

  • Determine the energy (in Joules) required to melt one gram of ice.
  • Determine the molar heat of fusion for ice (in kJ/mol).

Sensors and Equipment

This experiment features the following sensors and equipment. Additional equipment may be required.

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This experiment is #4 of Chemistry with Vernier. The experiment in the book includes student instructions as well as instructor information for set up, helpful hints, and sample graphs and data.

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