Applications Of The Scientific Method Essays Example

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Battery, Science, Zinc, Theory, Experiment, Hypothesis, Carbon, Education

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2020/11/04

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The scientific method is a procedure for conducting an impartial investigation. Scientists use this method to raise scientific questions and then answer them by making observations and conducting tests. The process is made up of a number of steps that include; asking questions, identifying and defining the problem, conducting background research to gather significant data, formulating a hypothesis, performing relevant scientific experiments to test the hypothesis, understanding and interpreting the outcome of the tests, and repeating the process if the experiment results fail to prove the hypothesis(Sciencebuddies.org, 2015).
Scientists more often than not use the scientific method to create an accurate representation of the world. Normally, cultural and individual opinions influence the analysis and interpretations of natural phenomena. The scientific method is performed to minimize such persuasions when expanding a theory.
When conducting the scientific method, one begins with observing a particular phenomenon or a group of phenomena. After observation, the next step entails proposing a hypothesis that aims at explaining the phenomena. The hypothesis is then tested by designing a scientific experiment. To get accurate results, the experimentation process should be handled carefully to avoid errors. The experiment involves controlling and measuring variables. Controlled variables are the parts of the experiment that are kept constant during the test. The independent variable is the variable that the scientist controls during the experiment while the dependent variable is the variable that one measures. The next step is statistically analyzing and interpreting the outcome recorded from the experiment. The scientist may choose to put the data down in the form of a table, chart or a graph. If the results correspond with the hypothesis, it may be regarded as a theory or law of nature. Then again, if the outcome of the experiment varies from the hypothesis, it should be rejected or altered.
The problem selected for the study is to determine which battery lasts longer between the alkaline and non-alkaline battery. The hypothesis formulated is that the alkaline battery lasts longer because advertisements on the media claim so. An experiment is performed to establish whether the hypothesis is correct or not. The requirements for the experiments include two flashlights of the same brand, type and size, four D-size battery cells; two alkaline and two non-alkaline , and any other two battery cells for testing each of the flashlights before commencing the experiment. In this test, the two types of batteries are the variables while the flashlights are the controlled condition. The alkaline battery cells are fitted into one flashlight while the non-alkaline battery cells are fitted into the other flashlight. Both flashlights are turned on simultaneously, and a timer is used to determine the time taken for each flashlight to go off.
According to the timer, the flashlight with the non-alkaline battery is the first to go off after 6 hours and 35 minutes while the flashlight with alkaline batteries goes off after 22 hours and 15 minutes. It is observed that the flashlight with the non-alkaline batteries first gets dim before going off whereas the one with the alkaline batteries goes off entirely at once (Energyquest.ca.gov, 2015). After examining and interpreting the outcome of the experiment, a practical conclusion can be made that the experiment proved the hypothesis to be correct.
A typical alkaline battery is a kind of primary battery that has a manganese dioxide cathode and a zinc anode and depends upon the reaction between zinc and manganese dioxide. It gets the name from its potassium hydroxide electrolyte that is an alkaline paste. Some alkaline batteries are designed in a special way to allow them to be rechargeable. An alkaline battery is made up of a steel can filled with manganese dioxide in its outmost internal cathode area and is packed with zinc and the electrolyte in the inner- most internal anode area. The electrolyte that surrounds the anode facilitates the chemical reaction between the cathode and the anode. Alkaline batteries have greater energy intensity and a lengthier life-cycle compared to non-alkaline batteries with equal voltage (Differencebetween.net, 2015). For that reason, alkaline batteries are more popular and are used in various household items such as; digital cameras, MP3 players, and radios.
A non-alkaline dry cell battery, mostly referred to as zinc-carbon battery, consists of a carbon rod cathode and a zinc anode. These batteries use an electrolyte that is acidic. The commonly used electrolyte is a mixture of zinc chloride and ammonium chloride (Hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu, 2015). The zinc can work as the anode and occupies the outer region while on the contrary the carbon rod acts as the cathode and occupies the inner region. The zinc container acts as the negative terminal while the carbon rod serves as the positive terminal. Zinc-carbon batteries were the first dry batteries used for commercial purposes. Zinc-carbon batteries have a short life-cycle and cannot be recharged.
Although the alkaline batteries have slight performance superiority over non-alkaline batteries, the non-alkaline batteries are more reliable and cheaper. However, the alkaline batteries are more suitable for electronic gadgets that require a quick recharge such as the flash unit of a camera.

References

Differencebetween.net,. (2015). Difference Between Zinc and Alkaline | Difference Between | Zinc vs Alkaline. Retrieved 8 February 2015, from http://www.differencebetween.net/technology/difference-between-zinc-and-alkaline/
Energyquest.ca.gov,. (2015). Science Projects - Battery Life. Retrieved 8 February 2015, from http://energyquest.ca.gov/projects/battery.html
Hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu,. (2015). Batteries. Retrieved 8 February 2015, from http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/electric/battery.html
Sciencebuddies.org,. (2015). Steps of the Scientific Method. Retrieved 8 February 2015, from http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_scientific_method.shtml

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