Exploration of SO2 Scrubbers: A First Year Environmental Project
Scrubbers: A First Year Environmental Project
Amber L. Schilling, Kenneth R. Hess, Phyllis A. Leber, and Claude H. Yoder
Journal of Chemical Education, 86, 225 (2009)
The reduction of acid rain using SO2 scrubbing is integrated into a laboratory project appropriate for first-year chemistry students. By burning a small amount of sulfur and then bubbling the gas produced through distilled water, the student first observes one of the reactions that produces acid rain. The student then tests four different reagents (calcium carbonate, calcium sulfate, sodium carbonate, and potassium hydroxide) for their ability to neutralize SO2(g), and then makes a conclusion about which could serve as potential SO2 scrubbers for coal-burning industries. Their observations are rationalized using basic concepts such as pH, acid-base reactions, relative acidities, neutralization reactions, and solubility.