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Jonathan Redrico

Name(s) ____________________________________

Worksheet: Molecules in Motion


http://chemconnections.org/Java/molecules/index.html
This workshop uses a computer simulation of gas behavior that follows kinetic molecular theory.
In this simulation two containers of gas molecules are adjacent to each other. No heat is
transferred between the two containers (That is, the containers do not change temperature during
the simulation). You can vary the temperature, the mass of the gas molecules, and the number of
gas molecules for each container. Once set, these variables will remain constant for the container.
Only the pressure will change.
1. Start with the following conditions in each container.
Red Particles
Temperature(K)
273
Mass (amu)
40
Number of particles
80
a) Is the pressure the same in the two containers?
If not, which is higher?

Blue Particles
273
40
80

The pressure is the same.

b) Change the amu of the red particles to 160 amu. Leave the others the same. How did the
pressure in the red container change?
The pressure did not change.
c) What happened to the velocity of the red particles?

The velocity decreased.

d) What would be the effect on the kinetic energy of the red particles?

The kinetic energy of the red particles would remain unchanged.


e) Explain how this relates to the pressure change of the container.
The pressure of the container did not change because the average kinetic
energy of the particles did not change. Since the force of the particles
exerted on the container is a function of the kinetic energy, and the pressure
is a function of the force of the particles, the pressure will not change if
the kinetic energy remains constant.

f) Consider two containers of gas, one containing carbon dioxide molecules and the other
containing helium atoms, each has the same number of particles, the same temperature,
and the same size containers. What would these conditions and the results above predict
about the relative pressure within the two containers? Test your prediction with the
model.

The two containers will have the same pressure with the
same temperature, same number of particles, and same
size container, regardless of the atomic masses of the
gaseous particles.

2. Set the two containers to the following conditions:


Red Particles
Temperature(K)
273
Mass (amu)
40
Number of particles
40

Blue Particles
273
40
80

a. Compare the pressure in the two containers. Explain the pressure result using
kinetic molecular theory.
The container with blue particles will have higher pressure because there
are more gaseous particles to exert force on the container walls.

b. Write a mathematical equation relating the number of molecules (moles) to


pressure at constant temperature and volume. Briefly explain in plain words the
meaning of the equation.

P n

The pressure of the gas is directly proportional to


the number of molecules present.

3. Set the two containers to the following conditions:


Red Particles
Temperature(K)
273
Mass (amu)
40
Number of particles
80

Blue Particles
546
40
80

a. Compare the pressure in the two containers. Explain the pressure result using
kinetic molecular theory.
The container with blue particles will have higher pressure because
the gaseous particles have higher velocities due to the higher
temperature.

b. Write a mathematical equation relating kinetic energy of the particles to their


temperature.

KE T

4. Write a mathematical equation relating the velocity of particles to their mass at constant
temperature. Briefly explain in plain words the meaning of the equation.

u 1/m

The velocity of particles is inversely


proportional to their mass.

5. Calculate the root mean square velocity for a carbon dioxide molecule at 273 K. The
thermodynamic constant R = 8.31451 J/K mol. Show your calculation.