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Scientific Name for Bubbles?

  1. Apr 20, 2011 #1
    just a quick question... I was wondering what is a more scientifiacly correct term for bubbles. e.g. it was noticed a bubble layer began to form on the surface of the magnesium. what word could be substituted for this? I seached around and found that apparently the scientific term for bubble is "a globule of one substance in another", so could the sentence be rewritten as: it was noticed multiple globules of oxygen gas began to form upon the surface of the magnesium.? I don't believe this sounds correct, is it?

  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 20, 2011 #2
    Bubble is a good english word. You don't have to complicate things to be scientific. Bubble chamber is a good old physics tool. Scientific enough.
  4. Apr 21, 2011 #3
    Ok, but i'd like to use words that sound scientific in a report... bubble sounds like a word a 5 year old would use. Is the word i used correct?

    did you mean this literally, or was that a fluke?


    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  5. Apr 21, 2011 #4
    Yes, I meant literally that the word "bubble chamber" is a scientific term in long use and therefore is "bubble" a good scientific word. The "science" is not in being obscure, it is in being precise. Bubble is precise enough to describe your observation.
  6. Apr 21, 2011 #5
    So by adding to the decription of bubble would this increase the accuracy of the term? e.g. "oxygen bubble". ---- Could I please have a confirmation as to whether the term "globule" is correct.

  7. Apr 21, 2011 #6
    Globule is of course correct since it means something roundish but I would object to the oxygen interpretation. You observe the bubbles but the composition of the gas within is something you deduce from subsequent exxperiments. Not that I know what you are doing but by the way, don't you mean hydrogen?
  8. Apr 21, 2011 #7
    our group is testing the effects that heating and cooling an electrochemical cell has in relation to the volage and temperature recorded from that cell. One of the electrodes used in the experiments was magnesium. the reason for me asking the question about the bubbles is because i was wanting to discuss the results from the experiment relating specifically to the graph attached. As you can see from aproximately 72C the the voltage becomes incredibly inconsistent, we figured this to be due to the interference of bubbles produced by the magnesium.

    We ran some additional tests using only Mg and water (basically only heating water with magnesium submerged within) and this showed the magnesium was reacting with the water at about the time the voltage from the experiment became erratic (we did this via the use of both Ph Paper and observation, the Ph tests were largely inconclusive (i'm planning to re-test these with different equipment), but through observation the Mg did begin to boil at about 72 deg Celc.)

    As for the bubble produced would these be a combination of both oxygen and hydrogen bubbles? (due to the evaporating water - is hydrogen and oxygen gas produced when water evaporates?) how would the inclusion of the Mg within the reaction incluence the substances within the bubbles?

    I just assumed that the bubbles were oxygen (thanks for pointing that error out).

    (to see the results of the PH tests you'll have to see the thread "metals changing acidity of water" - the site won't let me attach the same picture twice)

    Attached Files:

  9. Apr 21, 2011 #8
    Magnesium reacts with water (slowly) in the absence of voltage. Then you get hydrogen. If your voltages are positive on the Mg electrode you suppress this and get oxygen. It has nothing to do with evaporation. If you add electrons to water you get hydrogen and hydroxide. If you remove electrons from water you get oxygen and protons.
  10. Apr 21, 2011 #9
    in the absence of voltage? is this voltage your refering to heat energy applied when heating?
    so hydrogen is produced when Mg boils in water?

    if your voltages are positive on the Mg electrode - is this refering to the direction of the flow of electrons? -- Cu was the other electrode used it would make Mg the reductant ... which actually leads into another of the quesitons i was meaning to ask, why is it that Cu is the oxidant? I understand that Cu is the least reactive of the two electodes and therefore the Mg gives up electrons to stop the Cu from oxidising, but why does this difference in reactivity encourage the Mg to lose electrons? I actually asked my teacher this question last year and his response was "they just do...", can someone please provide a more in depth answer than this?

    we didn't (at least i think we didn't) add or remove elctrons from the water in the PH test. Are you reffering to the Daniell Cell experiment, because in this we used Cu nitrate and Mg nitrate ionic solutions.
  11. Apr 21, 2011 #10
    This is getting very complicated. Anyway: Yes you get hydrogen when you boil magnesium in water.
  12. Apr 21, 2011 #11
    Ok, Thankyou for the reponses
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