When coal is burned in a power plant, small particles of pollution called soot are produced. Static electricity can be used to capture soot before it leaves the power plant.
Can a mixture of salt, sugar and pepper be separated using static electricity?
A mixture of salt, sugar and pepper can/cannot be separated.
Sugar, salt, and pepper
Piece of wool
- Stroke the comb with wool to give it an electric charge.
- Put small amounts of sugar, salt, and pepper on a plate. Do not mix them together. Beginning a few inches above the plate, move the comb closer to the particles. Observe to see if one type of particle reacts before the others.
- Record your observations.
- Repeat the experiment with the salt, sugar, and pepper mixed together.
Analysis and Conclusion:
Are the particles attracted to the comb at different heights above the plate?
Can you separate a mixture of salt, sugar, and pepper using static electricity?
Could static electricity be used to clean the air at a coal-burning power plant?
Reprinted with the permission of the NEED Project. © 2008 National Energy Education Development Project - All Rights Reserved.
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