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Listed under:  Science  >  Forces and energy  >  Molecular forces

VisChem topic1: chemical bonding in pure substances in different states

This web page contains a collection of animations depicting copper, sodium chloride, water and oxygen at the molecular level. The animations show the arrangement of atoms, molecules and ions in solid, liquid and gaseous states as well as illustrating changes of state. Two animations demonstrate alternative methods of representing ...


VisChem topic 12: acid-base reactions

This web page contains a video, animations and a student worksheet examining the proton-transfer reactions of acids and bases. Self-ionisation of water, acidity of hydrated metal ions, proton gain by ammonia molecules and proton loss from acetic acid are depicted. The animations show important molecular-level segments from ...


VisChem topic 9: physical properties of water

This web page contains a video, animations and a student worksheet exploring the influence of structure and bonding on the physical properties of water. Two animations showing structure and bonding in oxygen are provided for comparison.


VisChem topic 4: energy in chemical reactions

This web page contains a video and animations exploring the distribution of molecular kinetic energy in solid, liquid and gaseous water, as well as the changes in chemical energy during reactions. Four animations depict the reaction mechanisms and energy profiles involved in organic substitution reactions.


VisChem topic 7: intermolecular forces

This web page contains animations demonstrating situations in which dispersion forces, ion-dipole forces and hydrogen bonding occur. Several animations show hydrated ions, and the effect of hydration on dissolving and reaction rates is discussed in explanatory text. A document containing lesson plans and student worksheets ...

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The surface tension of water

Imagine you could walk on water! Some insects can do just that. Watch as the Surfing Scientist uses a paperclip and a glass of water to demonstrate how this is possible.


Water molecule

This is a colour image of a model of a molecule of water, H₂O. In this model, atoms are represented by coloured spheres held together by grey rods, representing covalent bonds. The water molecule contains one oxygen atom (the red sphere) and two hydrogen atoms (the grey-white spheres).


VisChem topic 8: chemical properties of water and aqueous solutions

This web page contains video clips, animations and student worksheets that investigate the chemical properties of water and aqueous solutions. The major topics cover the structure and bonding of water, acids and bases, dissolving, ionic solutions, precipitation and complexation.


VisChem topic 14: structure and properties of carbon compounds

This web page contains QTVR objects showing aspects of the structure of selected organic molecules. The QTVR objects can be manipulated by the user so that, as well as being rotated, different ways of modelling the molecules can be seen.

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Magic tricks revealed using chemistry

Some magic tricks, such as disappearing ink or candles that won't blow out, can be explained by chemistry. In this clip, three classroom chemistry experiments demonstrate that some familiar magic tricks rely on acid-base chemical reactions, and the properties and behaviour of gases. Watch closely if you've ever wanted to ...

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Graphene: the new wonder material

Graphene is perhaps the most significant new material produced in recent years. It has many potential applications in electrical devices, biomedical technology and solar energy. Graphene is a form (allotrope) of carbon with some special chemical and physical properties. Watch this clip to explore the molecular structure, ...


Flow meter, c1923

This is a Type A 'Orivent' Meter Recorder at the No 4 pumping well at Spotswood Pumping Station. The meter features a chart recorder to record fluctuations in water pressure, and the rate of flow was indicated on six small dial gauges. The instrument is enclosed in a glass case.

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Pepper scatter experiment

Watch what happens in this pepper scatter experiment by Surfing Scientist, Ruben Meerman. Ruben demonstrates an important property of water, surface tension, by dipping a toothpick into water sprinkled with pepper. Find out what happens when detergent is added.

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Shrinking and expanding metals

Explore with the Surfing Scientist team what happens when metals are heated and cooled. Find out what happens to a metal ring when it is immersed in extremely cold liquid nitrogen. What do hinges on the Sydney Harbour Bridge have to do with all this? Find out.


VisChem topic 2: dissolution of an ionic salt

This web page contains a video clip, animations and student worksheets exploring the dissolving of ionic solids in water. The video clip has both filmed and animated scenes that compare the dissolving of sodium chloride with melting and show how the dissolving process can be represented by chemical equations. Important ...

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Implode a soft drink can using an invisible force

Can you imagine being able to crush a can without hitting or squashing it? Watch as Ruben the Surfing Scientist shows you how this can be done. Listen to Ruben explain the science behind the imploding can and find out what invisible force is involved.

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Name these mystery objects

Compete in a game show against characters Einstein and Pythagoras to identify three different mystery objects. Each of the objects is the end product of a science demonstration. Compare your ideas and predictions with the host Bernie Hobbs's identification of the objects and her explanation of the science behind them.


Water molecule showing polarity

This is a colour graphic representation of a water molecule. It depicts the structural formula of water superimposed on a space-filling model and an electron-density isosurface. The diagram is colour-coded to show the dipole nature of the molecule.

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Properties and behaviour of gases

All substances are made up of tiny particles. A change in temperature can change the way these particles behave. Watch as the Surfing Scientist demonstrates how a gas behaves when it is heated. Find out whether the balloon gets sucked or pushed into the bottle!


VisChem topic 3: precipitation of an ionic salt

This web page contains a video clip, animations and student worksheets exploring the precipitation of silver chloride. The video has both filmed and animated scenes showing the process at observational and molecular levels. It explains how the reaction can be represented by a chemical equation.