Chemistry: 3.3 Physical and Chemical Properties

We know it may be hard to resist but if something falls from outer space and lands in your backyard, you probably shouldn't immediately rush over and touch it. Get gloves first. And maybe watch this video while you wait for it to cool down.

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Transcript

00:24

when this thing just crashed into the family’s deck.

00:27

Opening up the orb, they discovered a strange, gloop-y blob inside.

00:31

Being the passionate little scientists they are,

00:33

they decided to do some experimenting.

00:35

Well first, Kimmy said they should explore the blob’s physical properties.

00:40

Well, physical properties, she explained to her brother,

00:42

were all the properties of an object that could be observed

00:45

without fundamentally changing that object at a chemical level.

00:48

So, for example, the blob was red. Color is a physical property.

00:53

It weighed 75 pounds—strange for such a small blob, but

00:57

weight is also a physical property, so Jimmy jotted it down.

01:01

The number and size of the substance was also a physical property the kids

01:05

could record. Well the number was easy—just one blob—but the size proved

01:09

to be a bit trickier, especially considering how it kept pulsating

01:12

and mutating in their hands.

01:14

However, they finally got it to sit still long enough to wrap a tape measure around it.

01:17

Well taste is another physical property, but, wisely,

01:21

the kids decided not to lick the blob.

01:24

The Clutterbuck children went on to make notes about the blob’s density,

01:28

odor, luster, hardness, and volume.

01:30

They couldn’t seem to get it to either melt or boil no matter

01:34

how hoard they tried, so it looked like they were done

01:36

on the physical properties front.

01:38

Kimmy also explained to Jimmy that they could further divide all their notes

01:41

about physical properties into extensive and intensive properties.

01:45

Well, the extensive properties are the ones that depend

01:48

on the amount of the substance, like its weight and volume,

01:52

while the intensive properties were anything that wouldn’t change

01:55

no matter how knee-deep in blobs you were, like

01:58

color, density, odor, and so on.

02:00

Once they were done, it was time to examine the blob’s chemical properties.

02:04

Chemical properties, Kimmy explained, were those properties

02:06

that were not easily reversible and changed the chemical structure

02:10

of a substance. So once they dipped the blob in something,

02:14

it might totally change it for good. The blob didn’t seem to like that idea.

02:18

The kids started by submerging the blob in water. Nothing.

02:21

The blob just seemed mildly irritated.

02:24

But once they dunked the blob into a beaker full of acetic acid,

02:27

well, the thing went haywire.

02:28

The blob turned from red to a bright green,

02:31

it started to fizz, and there were some bright orange sparks

02:34

coming off the sides.

02:35

It got very hot and emitted an odor similar to that given off by eggs

02:39

that are three years past their expiration date… ew.

02:42

Kimmy and Jimmy were having a hard time keeping up

02:44

as they furiously jotted down notes in their notebooks.

02:46

When the dust cleared, the blob was no more.

02:49

There was just a small, greenish-looking gentleman

02:51

who looked like he’d been through a major ordeal.

02:53

Oops… nobody said science was perfect.