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Thread: Helium microwave experiment

  1. #1 Helium microwave experiment 
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    For a science fair experiment me and my partner are working on creating plasma in a microwave.Our hypothesis is that if the manipulability of plasma is affected by the type of gas used, then plasma will react to magnetic fields differently depending on the gas that has been ionised. Because gases with a higher atomic number (more electrons) will - upon ionisation - affect the versatility of the plasma when exposed to magnetic fields. Our methedology is as follows:
    1. Light a match and place it on a small raised surface inside a microwave
    2. Fill a glass bowl/beaker with Helium, upside down so it doesnít escape (because helium is lighter than air).
    3. Cover the match with the bowl/beaker, leaving a slight gap so air can ventilate the match.
    4. Close the microwave door and turn it on for 15-20 seconds
    5. Place electromagnet directly outside the microwave door
    I was wondering if this experiment was safe and do-able since it worked whenidny fill the beaker with helium.
    Thanks in advance
    sciencekid


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  3. #2  
    Forum Ph.D.
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    The experiment sounds safe. I'm not sure about the part you expect the elctromagnet to play. When will it be used? When the microwave is on or afterwards? What effect do you expect it to have? How will you detect this effect? Have you verified that the elctro magnet's effects penetrate the microwave door?


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  4. #3  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
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    Quote Originally Posted by magneticfield View Post
    ...Our hypothesis is that if the manipulability of plasma is affected by the type of gas used, then plasma will react to magnetic fields differently depending on the gas that has been ionised. ...
    sciencekid
    So what are you comparing the effects with, what are your controls?
    As you describe it you will only be demonstrating in the case of helium. I think you would need to test a few different gases and measure the results to demonstrate that different gases give different results.
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  5. #4  
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    The electromagnet will be introduced about 10 seconds after the microwave has been turned on and we are expecting it to move around slightly. We are unsure if the electro magnet will penetrate through the door but we will find out during the experiment.The control to our test was doing the experiment, without filling the glass with helium, so instead of helium the air will be ionised.
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  6. #5  
    Forum Ph.D.
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    Test the magnetic penetration with a cheap compass.
    I think you need to be more careful regarding the controls. Check all the variables.
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