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In the Air Pollution workshop "Chemistry against Dust", we have a number of demonstrations carried out by our graduate students.
Cloud in the bottle
Rich Cochran (Chemistry) presents demonstrates role of particles in a cloud formation.
There are 3 conditions that are necessary for cloud formation: lifting (evaporation), cooling and condensation. Clouds are formed when water vapor is cooled enough to form tiny water droplets. This is exactly what happens when moist air rises in the atmosphere, cools, and water droplets form into clouds.
Gas Chromatography of Wood Smoke
Wood smoke is actually a mixture of numerous species. The identification of species present may allow us to find out which type of wood was burned (or whether it was wood at all). The mixture of volatile species can be analyzed using gas chromatography, which principles are explained by a graduate student Ashwini Geetla (from Chemistry).
Aerosol Concentrations Measurements
Graduate student (Atmospheric Sciences) Andrea Neumann demonstrates to high school students operation of a cloud condensation nuclei counter. The counter draws aerosols and condenses water vapor on their surface resulting in the aerosol growth. The large particles are then detected by a laser.
Chromatography of Colors
Jana Rousova a graduate student (Chemistry) introduces the concepts of interactions and solubility when explaining experiment chromatography of marker colors. More soluble chemicals will travel farther up with the solvent. The paper has some interactions (attractive sites) to which some pigments are more attracted than the others.
Combustion of methanol
Haewoo Jeong (MS in Chemistry) and graduate student Rich Cochran demonstrate combustion of methanol resulting in generation of a large volume of carbon dioxide (this experiment has to be carefully tested as it may lead to uncontrolled explosion).