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Date Submitted: 01/28/2013 01:10 AM

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Alexa Peterson

Testing the effect of temperature on

the rate of the reaction of Alka-Seltzer in water


For this experiment, it was attempted to discover how the rate of the reaction of Alka-Seltzer in water would be affected when the Alka-Seltzer tablets were added to waters of different temperatures. Alka-Seltzer is made up mainly of Sodium Bicarbonate and citric acid. When this tablet is dropped into the water, both the acid and the sodium bicarbonate dissolve into the water and react with one another, which is what causes the fizz. The products of this reaction are water, carbon dioxide, and sodium citrate. Because it is known that heating up particles increases their kinetic energy and therefore their collision force, it is hypothesized that as the temperature of the water is raised, the rate of the reaction of Alka-Seltzer in water will increase.


• 6 Alka-Seltzer tablets

• Thermometer

• 150 ml beaker

• Heating pad

• Hot hands

• 100 ml of deionized water

• 1 stopwatch


1. Fill the 150 mL beaker with 100 mL of deionized water.

2. Turn on the heating pad (use the same amount of heat for each trial) and place the beaker of water on it. Place the thermometer inside and make sure you suspend the thermometer in the water so it does not read the temperature of the beaker.

3. Once the water is 30 degrees Celsius, use your hot hand to remove the beaker from the heating pad, and then place it on the lab table. Drop in the Alka-Seltzer tablet, and at the same time start the stopwatch.

4. Monitor the reaction. As soon as the tablet has completely dissolved, stop the stopwatch and record your data.

5. Dispose of the solution, and begin the process with a beaker of fresh deionized water. Repeat steps 1 through 4 with the other five tablets, increasing the temperature of the water 10 degrees Celsius each time.