Peanut Energy By Sara Burgan 4th Grade Mrs. Crane Science Fair Project
Step I The Big Question Can I use the energy in a little peanut to heat up a container of water?
Step 2 Hypothesis Ifenergy is released from a peanut thenthat energy can be used to heat water and you will see a raise in temperature of water.
Step 3 Materials for the Experiment • One small bag unsalted shelled peanuts • A cork • A needle • A large metal juice or coffee can • A small metal soup can with label removed • A can opener • A hammer
More materials for the Experiment A large nail A metal BBQ skewer, like the kind you use for kabobs A cup of water A thermometer Matches or lighter, with mom or dad’s help Paper and pencil to write observations
Steps of the Experiment • Carefully push the eye of the needle (where the hole is in the needle) into the cork. Gently push the sharp end of the needle into peanut. Be careful not to push to hard or you will break the peanut. Try and put the peanut on the needle at a slight angle. • Remove the two ends of the large juice can using a can opener.
3. Have one of your parents to use the hammer and nail to punch holes around the bottom of the large can. These holes are important because they will make the can act like a chimney by holding the heat energy and focusing it on the smaller can.
4. Use the can opener to remove the top end of the small can, if it is already not done. With your parents help, use the hammer and nail to again punch holes near the top of the small can. The holes should be exactly opposite of each other. 5. Take the BBQ skewer and slide through the holes of the small can.
6. Pour a ½ cup of water into a small can. Let the water sit at room temperature for one hour. While you are waiting, eat some peanut energy. After an hour use the thermometer to check the temperature of the water in a small can. Write down the temperature on your piece of paper. 7. With your mom or dad helping put the peanut and cork on a nonflammable surface. Then use the lighter or match to light the peanut. Sometimes peanuts can be hard to light and the lighter may be better to use than a match.
8. Once the peanut has caught on fire, right away put the larger can around the nut. Then balance the BBQ skewer holding the small can on the top of the large can. Let the peanut burn until it burns out. Using the thermometer, stir the water and then record the temperature of the water on your paper.
Step 4 Data Water weight = 4 ounces (on weight watchers scale) One BTU = raise in temperature 4 degrees
formula Temperature increase _________________ = number of BTUs 4 in a peanut
Step 5 Data Analysis • Did the experiment test your hypothesis? Yes, the energy could be released from the peanut and be used to heat the water. • How do you know? I know because I was able to see an increase in temperature on the thermometer and then changed then used the formula to change the increased temperature to figure out the BTUs.
Conclusion • Was the hypothesis correct? Yes, the hypothesis was correct. • What would you change in the experiment and why? I would use more variety of nuts What are any new questions your have? I wonder if other nuts release more or less energy.
How do you know? I learned about peanuts from research Peanuts have energy in them. If you eat them your body will use that energy as food energy. This same energy from a peanut you can use to heat up water. Peanuts are the seeds of peanut plants. Peanuts grow in a shell, underneath the ground. Sometimes they are called ground nuts or goobers. Peanuts are not nuts they are part of the bean family.
Energy Something we cannot see or touch. It causes changes around us. Makes things warmer, like the sun, fire, and your house heater. Can move things, like moving cars, airplanes, and flash lights. Can help living things grow as food energy helps us grow.
BTU • A way to measure energy, like degrees measure the temperature of something. • BTU stands for British Thermal Unit.
References • http://www.allsciencefair.com. • http://www.peanut-institute.org • Micucci, Charles. The Life and Times of the Peanut. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1997. • Theonnes Keller, Kristin. From Peanuts to Peanut Butter. Mankato, Minn.: Capstone Press, 2005.
Temperature • The measurement of how hot or cold something is. • Hot things have more energy that cold things. • You can use a thermometer to measure how cold or hot something is.