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March 28, 2017

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5.00 lb of mercury is spilled onto a counter and forms a circular puddle with a diameter of 67.2 cm. Assuming the puddle is cylindrical shape, what is the thickness of the puddle of mercury?

Extra info: [1 lb = 435.6 g. Mercury is a liquid metal having a density of 13.6 g/mL. Volume = π(d/2)^2h]

Convert the mass of the puddle to grams.

  • science - ,

    A spill this size requires a report to your state Hazmat team.

    area*thickness*density= massHg

    PI(67.2/2)^2*T*13.6g/cm^3= 5lb*435.6g

    solve for T

  • science - ,

    As a physics undergraduate at MIT I broke a cold trap (brings pressure down to minimum in a vacuum system by condensing out gas molecules on the mercury which is sitting in liquid nitrogen) and spilled a similar quantity of Hg. It indeed caused a major response by the health physics team and that was in 1959 when the scientific community was far less attentive to environmental hazards.

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