Title

How much air will a match consume at different temperatures?

Presenter Information

James Menking
Logan Davis

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC Ballroom A

Start Date

17-5-2012

End Date

17-5-2012

Abstract

"How much air will a match consume at different temperatures?” That was the question I was trying to answer in my investigation. To test this, I let a match burn in a closed system indoors and outdoors (during the winter) until it extinguished itself. I timed how long it took the match to burn until extinguished, and after each test, I measured the percentage of the match used. My hypothesis was that the match would burn less air and for a longer period of time in colder air because the air is denser. However, after analyzing my collected data, I disagree with my hypothesis. The results of this experiment indicate that in a closed system where air is limited, a match will burn longer in cold air because there is more air per unit of volume. There are many valuable reasons to know that air is denser when it is colder. A wood stove, or any fire for that matter, would need less air intake in the winter. Airflow through our valley (convection current) can be better understood knowing cold air is denser than warm air. Pollution in air (depending on its relative density) could sink below less dense air in the summer and accumulate in cities. My experiment simply shows that cold air is denser than warm air. This concept is related to other, complex ideas, but they are related to the same overarching property of matter: colder equals denser!

Poster Number

35

Faculty Mentor(s)

Carey Gazis

Additional Mentoring Department

Geological Sciences

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May 17th, 11:15 AM May 17th, 1:44 PM

How much air will a match consume at different temperatures?

SURC Ballroom A

"How much air will a match consume at different temperatures?” That was the question I was trying to answer in my investigation. To test this, I let a match burn in a closed system indoors and outdoors (during the winter) until it extinguished itself. I timed how long it took the match to burn until extinguished, and after each test, I measured the percentage of the match used. My hypothesis was that the match would burn less air and for a longer period of time in colder air because the air is denser. However, after analyzing my collected data, I disagree with my hypothesis. The results of this experiment indicate that in a closed system where air is limited, a match will burn longer in cold air because there is more air per unit of volume. There are many valuable reasons to know that air is denser when it is colder. A wood stove, or any fire for that matter, would need less air intake in the winter. Airflow through our valley (convection current) can be better understood knowing cold air is denser than warm air. Pollution in air (depending on its relative density) could sink below less dense air in the summer and accumulate in cities. My experiment simply shows that cold air is denser than warm air. This concept is related to other, complex ideas, but they are related to the same overarching property of matter: colder equals denser!