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The Professor
The Professor, Taught at USC Years Ago
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I have a calorimetry question. In the process of ...

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I have a calorimetry question. In the process of transferring metal (tin) from the boiling water to the calorimeter, some heat was lost from the hot metal to the room before the metal was dropped into the water. This heat was not taken into account in my calculations of specific heat of the metal. Is my calculated value of specific heat higher or lower than it should be because this heat loss wasnt taken into account and why?
A very logical question.

If the heat had NOT been lost to the room, it would have remained in the hot metal.

Since the metal would have held more heat, it would have transferred that "missing" heat to the water as well.

So your calculation of specific heat would have been higher. Since the heat was lost your actual calculation was every so slightly LOW compared to what it would have been if the heat had not been lost to the room.
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Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Thanks so much. This really helped me!
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