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# Experiments​

## Energy Content of Fuels

Experiment #9 from Physical Science with Vernier

### Introduction

Energy content is an important property of fuels. This property helps scientists and engineers determine the usefulness of a fuel. Energy content is the amount of heat produced by the burning of 1 gram of a substance, and is measured in joules per gram (J/g).

You can determine energy content of a fuel by burning an amount of the fuel and capturing the heat released in a known mass of water in a calorimeter. If you measure the initial and final temperatures, the energy released can be calculated using the equation

$H = \vartriangle t \cdot m \cdot C_p$

where H = heat energy absorbed (in J), Δt = change in temperature (in °C), m = mass (in g), and Cp = specific heat capacity (4.18 J/g°C for water). Dividing the resulting energy value by grams of food burned gives the energy content (in J/g).

### Objectives

In this experiment, you will

• Measure temperature.
• Analyze data.
• Use a balance.
• Determine energy content.
• Compare the energy content of different fuels.

### Sensors and Equipment

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

#### Option 1

Go Direct® Temperature Probe

#### Option 2

Stainless Steel Temperature Probe