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In the Preparation and Properties of Biodiesel Fuel Laboratory Kit for consumer science, students prepare and analyze biodiesel fuel. Energy source depletion generates interest in alternative, renewable fuels. Take advantage of that interest!

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Concerns about global warming and the depletion of energy sources have generated widespread interest in alternative, renewable fuels. Take advantage of that interest by using this student lab kit to have students prepare and analyze biodiesel fuel. The biodiesel fuel methyl stearate is prepared by mixing cooking oil with methyl alcohol and sodium hydroxide. Students use common separation techniques to isolate the biodiesel fuel and then determine the fuel's heat of combustion by calorimetry. The real-world application of this lab makes it an effective learning exercise for students who would otherwise lose interest in purely chemical discussions of thermochemistry and heats of combustion. Includes Teacher Notes, extensive background material, reproducible student handouts, and all necessary chemicals and specialized equipment. Complete for 30 students working in pairs. Funnel and ring support are required and available separately. Perform this experiment in a fume hood or well-ventilated lab.