JCE Resources for Chemistry and the Atmosphere: An Update

Feb 1, 2009 - This annotated bibliography collects the best that past issues of JCE have to offer for use with the 2009 Chemists Celebrate Earth Day t...
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Chemical Education Today

Chemists Celebrate Earth Day 2009: Air—The Sky’s the Limit

JCE Resources for Chemistry and the Atmosphere: An Update by Erica K. Jacobsen

This annotated bibliography collects the best that past i­ ssues of JCE have to offer for use with the 2009 Chemists Celebrate Earth Day theme, “Air—The Sky’s the Limit”. It updates a previous JCE resource paper that was published in connection with National Chemistry Week 2003 “Earth’s Atmosphere and Beyond” (1). This paper completes the four-year Chemists Celebrate Earth Day theme cycle of water, recycling, soil, and air (2). The items described below have been published since the previous resource paper appeared. Each item has been characterized as an activity, book review, demonstration, experiment, JCE Featured Molecules, or software/video; several fit more than one classification. The most recent articles are listed first. An indication of the levels the article may serve is included. Articles that appeared adaptable to other levels, but not designed explicitly for those levels, are labeled “poss. h.s.” “poss. elem.”, and so forth.

Since all references are to Journal articles, they ­appear in abbreviated form, including only year, volume, page. Literature Cited 1. Jacobsen, E. K. J. Chem. Educ. 2003, 80, 1106–1112. 2. Jacobsen, E. K. J. Chem. Educ. 2008, 85, 188–190; 2007, 84, 212–213; 2006, 83, 199–200.

Supporting JCE Online Material

http://www.jce.divched.org/Journal/Issues/2009/Feb/abs158.html Abstract and keywords Full text (PDF) with links to cited URLs and JCE articles

Erica K. Jacobsen is Editor, Secondary School Chemistry, Journal of Chemical Education; [email protected].

✰  Resources for Chemistry and the Atmosphere Research Advances: Tunnel Study Indicates Policies Reduce PAH Levels; Outside the Tunnel: Air Pollution on a Personal Level. King, A. G. 2009, 86, 146. Informational; h.s./coll. Describes studies that analyzed air for tailpipe-emission pollutants. Robert Boyle: The Founder of Modern Chemistry. Williams, K. R. 2009, 86, 148. Informational; h.s./coll. “From Past Issues” column that focuses on articles related to Boyle. Nature: Our Atmosphere in the Year of Planet Earth. Heinhorst, S.; Cannon, G. C. 2009, 86, 150. Informational; h.s./coll. Describes Nature articles that cover several aspects of climate change and its effect on society. News from Online: Stratospheric Chemistry. Diener, L. 2009, 86, 153. Activity/Informational; h.s./coll./poss. elem. Describes Web sites related to the atmosphere. A Cross-Disciplinary Collaboration. Diener, L.; Anderson, J. A. 2009, 86, 156. Activity/Informational; all levels Describes a collaboration between a science and an art class to create artwork related to the atmosphere.

The piece “Jungle Fever” by Kathy Rovik is one result of a collaboration between a science and an art class.


Teaching Chemistry Using October Sky. Goll, J. G.; Wilkinson, L. J.; Snell, D. M. 2009, 86, 177. Informational; h.s./coll. Explains the chemistry portrayed in the book Rocket Boys: A Memoir and its movie adaptation October Sky and how it can be used in the classroom. Measurement of Ozone Emission and Particle Removal Rates from Portable Air Purifiers. Mang, S. A.; Walser, M. L.; Nizkorodov, S. A.; Laux, J. M. 2009, 86, 219. Experiment; h.s./coll. Laboratory protocol for testing portable air purifiers to measure clean air delivery rate and ozone emission rate.

Students can apply the ideal gas law to a helium-filled balloon.

How Heavy Is a Balloon? Using the Ideal Gas Law. Johnson, B. O.; Van Milligan, H. 2009, 86, 224A. Activity; h.s./coll. Students use the ideal gas law to predict the mass of a helium-filled Mylar balloon if it were empty and compare it to the actual empty balloon mass. Exploration of SO2 Scrubbers: An Environmental Chemistry Project. Schilling, A. L.; Leber, P. A.; Yoder, C. H. 2009, 86, 225. Experiment; coll./poss. h.s. Simulates various industrial SO2 scrubbers and assesses the relative efficacy of each. JCE Featured Molecules. Molecular Models of Volatile Organic Compounds. Coleman, W. F. 2009, 86, 256. Molecules available at http://www.jce.divched.org/JCEWWW/Features/ MonthlyMolecules/2009/Feb/index.html. JCE Featured Molecules; h.s./coll. Fully manipulable (Jmol) versions of a variety of volatile organic compounds.

Journal of Chemical Education  •  Vol. 86  No. 2  February 2009  •  www.JCE.DivCHED.org  •  © Division of Chemical Education 

Chemical Education Today

Fog Machines, Vapors, and Phase Diagrams. Vitz, E. 2008, 85, 1385. Demonstration; h.s./coll. Describes fog machines and fog formation with demonstrations related to states of matter, phase changes, and phase diagrams. Hold the Heat: Global Warming and Calorimetry. Burley, J. D.; Johnston, H. S. 2008, 85, 224A. Activity; h.s./coll./poss. elem. Students measure temperature as a function of time for samples of ice water heated by light bulbs and/or convection with room-temperature surroundings. It is linked with the topic of global warming. Air Toxics under the Big Sky: A Real-World Investigation To Engage High School Science Students. Adams, E.; Smith, G.; Ward, T. J.; Vanek, D.; Marra, N.; Jones, D.; Henthorn, M.; Striebel, J. 2008, 85, 221. Informational/Experiment; h.s./coll. Describes a collaborative research project between a university and high schools. Students collect air samples at their homes to analyze for volatile organic compounds. Using the Relationship between Vehicle Fuel Consumption and CO2 Emissions To Illustrate Chemical Principles. OliverHoyo, M. T.; Pinto, G. 2008, 85, 218. Activity; coll./poss. h.s. Students use consumer product information to compare theoretical stoichiometric calculations with available car emission and fuel consumption data. Experimental Determination of Ultraviolet Radiation Protection of Common Materials. Tavares, S. C. A.; Esteves da Silva, J. C. G.; Paiva, J. 2007, 84, 1963. Experiment; h.s./coll. Describes four experiments demonstrating UV radiation protection provided by different systems and simulating ozone-layer protection. “Holes” in Student Understanding: Addressing Prevalent Misconceptions Regarding Atmospheric Environmental Chemistry. Kerr, S. C.; Walz, K. A. 2007, 84, 1693. Activity/Informational; coll./poss. h.s. Describes a study to access misconceptions about the greenhouse effect and the ozone hole, and four data analysis exercises to address these misconceptions.

Photo courtesy Andrei P. Sommer

A Simple Calorimetric Experiment That Highlights Aspects of Global Heat Retention and Global Warming. Burley, J. D.; Johnston, H. S. 2007, 84, 1686.

The formation of realworld tornadoes can be studied in the lab using microtornadoes.

Experiment; h.s./coll. Calorimetric experiment that illustrates a classic principle of chemical thermodynamics and introduces global heat retention and global warming. Research Advances: New Antifreeze Protein Gives Cold Shoulder to Its Natural Counterpart; Lab-Made “Micro­ tornadoes” May Reveal Destructive Secrets of Real-Life Twisters. King, A. G. 2007, 84, 1402. Informational; h.s./coll. Describes new approach to studying tornado formation using micro­ tornadoes and other recent research. Astrochemistry—From Astronomy to Astrobiology. Shaw, A. M.; reviewed by Pagni, R. 2007, 84, 233. Book review; coll./poss. h.s. Review of book that focuses on both the origin of the universe and origin of life. Chemistry Comes Alive! Vol. 8. Bain, R. L.; Jacobsen, J. J.; Maynard, J. H.; Mitschele, C. J.; Moore, J. W. 2006, 83, 1406. [Available from JCE Software.] Software/video; h.s./coll./poss. elem. “Atmospheric Pressure”, “Atmospheric Pollution”, “Ozone: Absorbance of UV Light”, “Neon Signs”, and “Helium”. Sections show: examples of atmospheric pressure being used to collapse metal containers; simulations of acid rain and other pollutants; production of ozone; images of gas discharge lamps filled with noble gases; atomic emission spectrum of helium. Astrochemistry Examples in the Classroom. Hudson, R. L. 2006, 83, 1611. Informational; coll./poss. h.s. Describes astrochemical examples for the chemistry classroom. Radon in Homes: Recent Developments. Atwood, C. H. 2006, 83, 1436. Informational; h.s./coll. Discusses the formation, accumulation, and radiological effects of radon gas in the home, along with recent case studies and information about how to determine your home’s risk. What Is Your Mental Picture of Ordinary Air? Ramette, R. W.; Haworth, D. K. 2006, 83, 834. Activity; h.s./poss. elem. Recounts responses from chemistry and art history students to the question posed in the title, and has a suggestion for further use in the classroom.

B68, a dark nebula in the Milky Way galaxy, that can be used as an astrochemical example in the classroom. Courtesy of the European Southern Obser vator y; h t t p : / / w w w. e s o . o r g (accessed Dec 2008).

© Division of Chemical Education  •  www.JCE.DivCHED.org  •  Vol. 86  No. 2  February 2009  •  Journal of Chemical Education


Chemical Education Today

Chemists Celebrate Earth Day 2009: Air—The Sky’s the Limit

Photo by John Pearce

Research Advances: Children on School Buses May Face Increased Exposure to Diesel Pollution; Where Did All the Nitrogen Go?; Designer Wires. King, A. G. 2005, 82, 1434. Informational; h.s./coll. Discusses a study of diesel self-pollution levels of school buses and other recent research. A Passive Sampler for Determination of Nitrogen in Ambient Air. Xiao, D.; Lin, L.; Yuan, H.; Choi, M. M. F.; Chan, W. 2005, 82, 1231. Experiment; coll. Describes construction of an inexpensive sampler to determine NO2 in ambient air. Applying Chemical Potential and Partial Pressure Concepts To Understand the Spontaneous Mixing of Helium and Air in a Helium-Inflated Balloon. Lee, J.-Y.; Yoo, H.-S.; Park, J. S.; Hwang, K.-J.; Kim, J. S. 2005, 82, 288. Experiment; coll. Students analyze gases in a balloon filled with helium and how its composition changes over time. The Determination of the Percent of Oxygen in Air Using a Gas Pressure Sensor. Gordon, J.; Chancey, K. 2005, 82, 286. Experiment; h.s./coll. Describes determination of oxygen in air using a calculator-based data collection system compared to results obtained with a watermeasurement method.

Photo by Mindy Bedrossian

A Simple Method for Measuring Ground-Level Ozone in the Atmosphere. Seeley, J. V.; Bull, A. W.; Fehir, R. J., Jr.; Cornwall, S.; Knudsen, G. A.; Seeley, S. K. 2005, 82, 282. Experiment; h.s./coll.


The cover of the February 2005 issue illustrated the thinning of the protective ozone layer over Antartica.

Image courtesy of NASA.

Scientists have investigated the effects of warming trends on ecosystems such as the Alaskan Tundra.

Describes an iodometric assay to determine ground-level ozone concentrations with an inexpensive sampling apparatus and a home­ made photometer. Fractional Distillation of Air and Other Demonstrations with Condensed Gases. Oliver-Hoyo, M.; Switzer, W. L. III 2005, 82, 251. Demonstration; coll./poss. h.s. Demonstration of the fractional distillation of air, including variations and extensions, along with tests for various gases and dry ice demonstrations. A Cool Drink! An Introduction to Concentrations. Bedrossian, M. 2005, 82, 240A. Activity; h.s./coll./poss. elem. Students use serial dilution to prepare Kool-Aid drinks and discuss concentration levels, including levels of pollutants in air. Nitrogen: It Always Needs a Fix. Williams, K. R. 2005, 82, 194. Informational; h.s./coll. “From Past Issues” column describing JCE articles about nitrogen. Nature: Environmental Problems and New Hope for the Treatment of Malaria. Heinhorst, S.; Cannon, G. C. 2005, 82, 186. Informational; h.s./coll. Describes articles from Nature about the effects of warming trends on the Arctic tundra and the impact of fires in Southeast Asia. JCE Featured Molecules. Sunscreens. Coleman, W. F. 2004, 81, 1491. Molecules available at http://www.jce.divched.org/ JCEWWW/Features/MonthlyMolecules/2004/Oct/index.html. JCE Featured Molecules; h.s./coll. Fully manipulable (Jmol) versions of molecules found in commercial sunscreens, or in the synthesis of sunscreen materials. Water in the Atmosphere. Kauffman, J. M. 2004, 81, 1229. Informational; coll./poss. h.s. Author examines college-level general chemistry textbooks and discusses their lack of information about water in the atmosphere. Why Helium Ends in “-ium”. Jensen, W. B. 2004, 81, 944. Informational; h.s./coll. The history of the discovery of helium and the origins of its name.

Preparing several concentrations of pre­ sweetened powered drink mix can relate to a discussion of pollutant concentrations.

Journal of Chemical Education  •  Vol. 86  No. 2  February 2009  •  www.JCE.DivCHED.org  •  © Division of Chemical Education