You can use a temperature sensor to study the insulating properties of materials. Two temperature sensors allow you to compare different materials at the same time. In this example two beakers of hot water are differently insulated and allowed to cool. As they do so a cooling curve is plotted.

What you need

Beakers, clamps to hold the probes, stands, hot water, insulating materials, fabric and aluminium foil, water bath, interface and temperature sensors.

Setting up

Connect temperature sensors to the interface. Pour equal amounts of hot water into each beaker. Place the beakers in a hot water bath to get them to the same temperature.
Start your sensing software. Set up your software to record for 15 minutes. Remove the beakers from the water bath, add the temperature probes and start recording. Wrap one beaker with insulating material.


How does the graph tell you that the water is getting cooler?
How can you tell which of the beakers is getting cool fastest?

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