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Author: Fulcrum Institute Development Team

Challenges

Challenges like the ones you tackle this week are opportunities to assess your understanding of the science you've worked with and to stimulate and extend your thinking. Give each challenge your best shot, writing your ideas in your journal. Before you look at solutions, note areas where you think your understanding is solid and areas where it is fragile. Jot down questions you have.

In the discussion this week, refer to your experience with the Challenges. You might pose a question or dilemma, comment on an idea that intrigued you, or, create an additional Challenge based on this week's science focus. Use the subject line S10Challenge.

Challenge 1

Conceptual Physics Chapter 15 Review Question 14:
In addition to the random motions of a molecule from place to place that are associated with temperature, some molecules can absorb large amounts of energy that go into vibrations and rotations of the molecule itself. Would you expect materials composed of such molecules to have a high or low specific heat. Explain.

Challenge 2

Suppose you have two identical insulated containers each with 500 cc of water at 80° C. In one container you stir in 100 cc of cold water at 10° C. In the other you place a cube of aluminum whose temperature is 10° C and volume is 100 cc. Which container reaches a lower equilibrium temperature? If you wanted the container with the aluminum to reach its equilibrium temperature as slowly as possible, what shape would you make the aluminum?