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Beginner's Guide to Propulsion
Reaction of Gases Activity

If so instructed by your teacher, print out a worksheet page for these problems.

Before you begin:

  • In this Activity you will be using the Beginner's Guide to Propulsion and the Animated Gas Lab to complete the worksheet.
  • The Animated Gas Lab is used to illustrate the variation of the gas properties (pressure, temperature, mass, and volume). In the lab a theoretical gas is confined in a blue container.
    • The volume of the gas is shown in yellow and is determined by the position of a red piston. The volume can be changed by moving the red piston using the red screw at the top of the piston.
    • The number of moles of the gas is indicated by the number of small black "molecules" in the volume. The number of moles can be changed by injecting or withdrawing molecules using the pump at the left.
    • There are two probes inserted into the bottom of the container to measure the pressure and the temperature. The pressure can be changed by adding or removing green weights from the top of the red piston, and the temperature can be changed by heating the container with the "torch" at the bottom.

Answer the following questions:

  1. Give one effect that the compressibility of air has on an object moving through it.
  2. In the Animated Gas Lab, what happens to the volume of a gas when you freeze mass and pressure and increase the temperature?  Why does this happen?
  3. When temperature and mass remain constant, what will happen to the pressure when the volume of a gas is decreased? Why?
  4. Why does an increase in the mass of a gas increase the volume of that gas within the chamber?  (Temperature and pressure remain constant in this example.)
  5. When pressure increases, which variables should remain constant in order to observe an increase in temperature?
  6. Explain "Charles and Gay-Lussac's Law."
  7. Following this thinking, if the volume of a given mass of gas is 5 cubic meters, what is the temperature?
  8. Which properties depend on the amount of gas in the sample?
  9. Which formula helps us find the "specific volume" of a gas?
  10. Which property of a gas causes pressure within a container?


Related Pages:
Propulsion Activity Index
Propulsion Index


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Editor: Tom Benson
NASA Official: Tom Benson
Last Updated: Thu, Jun 12 04:39:33 PM EDT 2014

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