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Practicals

Group 2 Metal Reactions
AKA: Magnesium and Calcium Reactions

Summary

Magnesium and calcium are reacted with hydrochloric acid and their reactions compared.

Operation

Tiny pieces of magnesium and fresh calcium are given to students to react in a test tube with a small amount of hydrochloric acid. Because calcium is slightly more reactive in acid than the magnesium, a visually more extreme reaction should occur.

Equipment required (per set):

  • Hydrochloric acid (1 mol dm¯³) (Irritant)
  • Small pieces of magnesium ribbon (highly flammable)
  • Small pieces of fresh calcium (highly flammable)
  • 2 Test tubes
  • Test tube rack
  • Splint

The equations for each reaction are below:

Magnesium + hydrochloric acid magnesium chloride + hydrogen

Mg + 2HCl MgCl2 + H2

Calcium + hydrochloric acid calcium chloride + hydrogen

Ca + 2HCl CaCl2 + H2

Tests for hydrogen can be conducted in both reactions by holding a lit splint close to the top of the tube.

Safety

 Wear eye protectionWear eye protection.

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