Rocket scientist for a day: Investigating alternatives for chemical propulsion
2012 (English)In: Journal of Chemical Education, ISSN 0021-9584, E-ISSN 1938-1328, Vol. 89, no 10, 1301-1304 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
This laboratory experiment introduces rocket science from a chemistry perspective. The focus is set on chemical propulsion, including its environmental impact and future development. By combining lecture-based teaching with practical, theoretical, and computational exercises, the students get to evaluate different propellant alternatives. To complete the task, they need to use several important curricular concepts, such as the breaking and formation of bonds, redox reactions, and thermodynamics. They also apply basic computational electronic structure calculations to investigate the energetic content of hitherto nonexisting alternatives. Finally, actual chemical rocket propulsion is demonstrated through the assembly and testing of a model rocket motor, employing a commercially available kit. The full experiment was developed for upper-level high school classes and is completed in a 3-h lab period. The experiment, or parts of it, has also been successfully used both in undergraduate programs and continuing education for teachers.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 89, no 10, 1301-1304 p.
Applications of Chemistry, Calorimetry/Thermochemistry, Computational Chemistry, Covalent Bonding, First-Year Undergraduate/General, Hands-On Learning/Manipulatives, High School/Introductory Chemistry, Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary, Oxidation/Reduction, Physical Chemistry
Chemical Sciences Pedagogy
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-103647DOI: 10.1021/ed200848rISI: 000308788300016ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84866158783OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-103647DiVA: diva2:561307
QC 201210182012-10-182012-10-172012-10-29Bibliographically approved