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Making plastic from potato starch

Description

In this activity students make a plastic from potato starch and investigate the effect of adding a 'plasticiser' has on the polymer that they make.

Credits

:
This is an experiment from the Practical Chemistry project, developed by the Nuffield Foundation and the Royal Society of Chemistry.
making-plastic-from-potat...



Apparatus Chemicals

Eye protection

Each working group requires:

Grater

Beakers (400 cm3), 4

Large pestle and mortar

Beaker (250 cm3)

Large watch glass

Bunsen burner

Heat resistant mat

Tripod

Gauze

Stirring rod

Petri dish or white tile

Universal indicator paper

Teat pipettes

Measuring cylinder (25 cm3)

Measuring cylinder (10 cm3)

Access to:

Tea strainer

Balance (not essential, Note 1)

Each working group requires:

Dilute hydrochloric acid, 0.1 M, about 10 cm3

Dilute sodium hydroxide, 0.1 M (IRRITANT), about 10 cm3

Potatoes, 100 g

Distilled water, about 500 cm3

Access to:

Potato starch - either extracted in the first part or 2.5 g of bought potato starch

Food colouring

Propane-1,2,3-triol (glycerol), 2 cm3

Refer to Health & Safety and Technical notes section below for additional information.

 







In this activity students make a plastic from potato starch and investigate the effect of adding a 'plasticiser' has on the polymer that they make.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

This is a resource from the Practical Chemistry project, developed by the Nuffield Foundation and the Royal Society of Chemistry. This collection of over 200 practical activities demonstrates a wide range of chemical concepts and processes. Each activity contains comprehensive information for teachers and technicians, including full technical notes and step-by-step procedures. Practical Chemistry activities accompany Practical Physics and Practical Biology.