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Chem 162 Lab 5

Reactivity Trends


There are several parts to this lab. In Parts I - III, you will observe several reactions involving metals in order to determine the activity series of these elements and the relative solubilities of ionic salts containing the cations of these metals. In Part IV, the oxidizing ability of the elemental halides will be investigated.


The activity series is empirically determined and provides a list of metals in order of their activity, or ease of oxidation. The ranked list can then be used to help predict the outcome of redox (or replacement) reactions. Will a reaction occur and, if so, what are the expected products?


In this experiment you will study aluminum, iron, copper, and lead, as well as the cations of these metals.  You will examine these in three ways:

  1. you will determine if/how the metals reacts with an acid,
  2. you will determine the relative activity of these metals by performing replacement reactions with metal-ion solutions, and
  3. you will determine what reaction, if any, takes place between the metal ion and a select group of anions.


In Part IV, you will rank the oxidizing abilities of the elemental halides. By reacting chlorine (Cl2) with ions of the other halides (bromide, Br-, and iodide, I-) the ability of Cl2 to oxidize Br- and I- will be determined. The reaction between bromine and iodide will also be observed. Based on the observations of each halide's ability to oxidize or reduce the others, the trend within the group will be determined.

  • Prelab
    • Intro (pdf 129 KB, rev 3/20/12)
    • Required Assignment in Catalyst (due Tuesday 7/31 at 10:30 am)
    • Review Materials & Procedure
    • Review Demonstration


  • In Lab


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