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Spock
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thumbup.gif posted on 12-6-2015 at 06:26
Project ideas


So I'm in a rather interesting position at my school, there is a research course offered where you are allowed to choose a topic and spend the year working with it. Having just finished AP chemistry and enjoying it I have decided that I probably will be doing something chemistry related. While I am not asking for an idea itself, if anyone had anything to perhaps point me in a good direction as to fining one would be much appreciated .
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confused
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[*] posted on 12-6-2015 at 07:13


well, it really depends on what area of chemistry you're interested in, abit more info on that would help
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[*] posted on 12-6-2015 at 09:02


Quote: Originally posted by Spock  
So I'm in a rather interesting position at my school, there is a research course offered where you are allowed to choose a topic and spend the year working with it. Having just finished AP chemistry and enjoying it I have decided that I probably will be doing something chemistry related. While I am not asking for an idea itself, if anyone had anything to perhaps point me in a good direction as to fining one would be much appreciated .
That's exactly what I'm going to do next year too. I've talked to my teacher about it, and she said that I could possibly do some independent lab projects as long as they're safe and don't require her to pay much attention to me. Other than that, I'd be helping with setting up labs for the other classes, getting some extra time to read up on stuff on my own, and if nothing else, it would be a time to get all of my homework done so that I'd have more time to do chemistry at home. :)

So I don't have a specific thing that I have to be researching, I'll just have a class that is chemistry related and gives me a certain degree of freedom to study what I'd like to.




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[*] posted on 12-6-2015 at 09:14


Quote: Originally posted by confused  
well, it really depends on what area of chemistry you're interested in, abit more info on that would help

So I really haven't narrowed it down much, but I had been looking primarily towards something in inorganic chemistry (LIke that helps) but beyond that I really do not know.
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[*] posted on 12-6-2015 at 09:47


This board certainly has a wealth of information on projects. Search and ye shall find. My neodymium magnet project that's been ongoing for several years would be a good candidate (as long as you don't finish it before me!). The ionic liquids thread had some neat ideas and has good potential for some sort of project too.
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[*] posted on 12-6-2015 at 21:35


I am going to recommend taking a browse of http://www.compoundchem.com/
(For some reason the layout of this website is not as good as it was a while back but the same information is still there. And tons of it.)
Lots of interesting chemicals in everyday products and plants. For a project, qualitative analysis, quantitative analysis, extraction, purification, determination of yield, determination of purity, artificial synthesis -- take your pick.

Or look up the graphics on "the week in chemistry" Every one presents half a dozen interesting discoveries with links to both technical details and public press releases. Something you read is bound to appeal -- something will spark an idea of something tangential to the main thing that you could replicate or explore.

If it was me, I would perhaps study a transition element and explore its chemistry as much as I could. Say, Mn, Cr or Mo. Prepare a range of different salts, study its different oxidation states and prepare compounds in each state, put together a range of demonstration experiments that showcase its unique properties, do some experiments to confirm published data (reduction potentials for example). Again, there really is no limit.

Or take your cue from some of the competitions that have been run. The nitric acid comp has resurfaced recently. No one has actually achieved its main goal. I intend to get back to it and I know that one other SMer is quietly working away on some apparatus he has designed. If you have time you can dedicate to it, you could probably take things a lot further than anyone else has.

This is an awesome opportunity. There is tons to choose from. Let your imagination go wild and pick something that really motivates and inspires you. After all you will need both imagination and motivation to accomplish something worthwhile in a year-long project. And if you finish the year with something presentable then that will more than give you the edge in selling your skills in the future.
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[*] posted on 14-6-2015 at 18:26


I was in this same position a year ago with writing my Extended Essay for the IB program. I knew immediately that I wanted to do it on chemistry and asked this very same question in a thread back then. I also spent a bunch of time just surfing the forum (there is an insane amount of information to find) and happened upon a thread describing the formation of calcium peroxide. I ended up writing my essay on the conversion of hydrogen peroxide to calcium peroxide and its reconversion back to hydrogen peroxide. It was kinda weird since the IB criteria was somewhat strange and not your standard research paper, but it turned out well. You will probably be in a better position where you can undertake a topic purely academically, and investigate various phenomenon without having to bend your findings into set criteria.

I guess my advice is just to browse the forum. You're bound to find something that piques your interest :). I'm going to have to pick something too as well, since I'm actually going to be taking a PG year and undertaking a "research project" on chemistry during it. I've also been leaning towards inorganic stuff, and the chemistry of various transition metals, especially chromium: there are some really interesting complexes that you can form from it. In addition, some of the elements towards the metalloids such as antimony, bismuth and even tin have some really interesting properties and compounds to investigate.

Oh, and also find out what your school's limitations are as soon as you can in terms of chemical availability and safety. See what the deal is with toxic, carcinogenic, and more hazardous compounds in general. (I know for the IB I wasn't allowed to use anything that was even remotely associated with being carcinogenic :()

[Edited on 15-6-2015 by blargish]




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