Determining the heat capacity of honey at home.
The average heat capacity of a substance can be determined at home by determining the rate of heat
transfer from a hot plate at a fixed setting to a quantity of substance with known heat capacity e.g.
water which has a heat capacity of 4190 J/kg/K, where the same (cooled) container is used to make
the measurements for both substances.
For this, your final home experiment which will contribute to your final report you are to
design and carry out an experiment at home to determine the heat capacity of honey at home.
Your equipment list should include:
300-500 g of honey
500 g of water
Small cooking pot (1 litre)
Candy Thermometer (check its temperature range first)
House stove (if you do not have
one, visit a friend)
Candy thermometers are designed to click onto the side of a saucepan as shown. They should not
touch the bottom of the pan. Your liquid should stay just on the bottom mark (usually 30oC) so you
can see the scale (weigh your liquid). The lowest value on a candy is 30oC so you will not be able to
measure below this temperature. Does this matter? What do you need to measure for this experiment
to work out heat transfer and heat capacity?
Useful formula: Rate of heat transfer, H in J/s, is given by:
Where m is the mass of substance in kg, c the heat capacity in J/kg/C, T the temperature in degrees
celcius, and t, time in seconds.
Compare your specific heat to the accepted values for honey: 2268 J/kg/K – 2520 J/kg/K. How is
specific heat normally measured?
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