Part II: Hazardous Waste Containment Read all instructions completely and carefully before you begin.
generate a hypothesis that addresses the type of containment for nuclear waste is most to least hazardous.
• cotton balls (cut in half)
• drain cleaner ⚠ Be careful!
• gloves (if desired)
• Bromothymol blue (pH indicator) ⚠ Be careful!
• plastic wrap
• aluminum foil
• modeling clay or playdoh
• permanent marker
• 4 disposable plastic containers with lids
• disposable pipette
• small sandwich baggie/s
• safety goggles
1. Label the lids of four plastic containers, “control,” “aluminum,” “plastic,” and “clay.” Then fill each container ½ full of water.
2. Wearing the gloves and safety goggles and using extreme caution, add 10 drops of drain cleaner to a half cotton ball, and use the tweezers to place the cotton ball in a container and cover with the lid labeled “control.”
3. set up another half cotton ball by adding 10 drops of drain cleaner and use the tweezers to place the cotton ball on a piece of foil. Wrap the cotton ball tightly in the aluminum foil. Be careful not to contaminate the outside of the foil with drain cleaner. Try to make sure the foil is watertight, add it to a container, and cover with the lid labeled “aluminum.”
4. set up another half cotton ball by adding 10 drops of drain cleaner and use the tweezers to place the cotton ball on a piece of plastic wrap. Wrap the cotton ball tightly in the plastic wrap. Be careful not to contaminate the outside of the plastic with drain cleaner. Tie the ends of the plastic wrap, add it to a container, and cover with the lid labeled “plastic.”
5. set up another half cotton ball by adding 10 drops of drain cleaner and use the tweezers to place the cotton ball on a piece of modeling clay that has been rolled out to accommodate the size of the cotton ball. Cover the cotton ball with the modeling clay completely, making sure there are no open seams. Be careful not to contaminate the outside of the clay with drain cleaner. Smooth the surface of the clay, double-checking for any openings, add it to a container, and cover with the lid labeled “clay.”
6. These containers represent soaking nuclear waste in different types of storage containers in ground water.
7. Immediately after setup, record the initial pH of each of the containers using the Bromothymol blue test outlined below.
8. Observe your containers and continue to record the pH for at least three days. Look for signs of leaks. Record the information on a data table for each day.
Hypothesis: Based on the experimental setup and the potential for leaks or seepage, the most hazardous containment for nuclear waste would be the “control” container with no additional containment measures.
Organize the qualitative and quantitative data collected and be sure to label your data tables appropriately including a title and column headers. Don’t forget to include pictures in your lab report.
Analysis & Discussion
Organize the data collected to set up your graph. Graph should reflect your independent and dependent variables and all experimental and/or control groups.
Summarize your findings and analysis in coherent and complete paragraphs. Be sure to include the purpose of your experiment and relate your findings to your hypothesis. Also discuss limitations, possible sources of error, and means of improvement for your investigation.
Include all references. Don’t forget that you should have intext citations to correlate to the references included in this section.
Below are a few resources that may be helpful. Remember to include citations if you rely upon ideas from an outside source, including those below.
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