posted by Brigid .
I'm trying to determine the specific heat of copper by experiment and I have a question about the change in temperature of the copper. If I take the copper out of boiling water at 100 deg. C and place it in water at 10 degrees C, the temp. of the water increases to 14 deg. Is the change in the temperature of the copper 100-14=86 deg. or is it just the 4 degrees that the water took to increase its temperature by 4 deg.
At thermal equilibrium, when everythng is 14 C, the temperature change of the copper is -86 C, and +4C for the water. The heat energy lost by the copper equals the energy gained by the water. Writing that equation with the water specific heat and masses will let you solve for the specifric heat of copper. You have not provided the masses in your problem statement. You should have recorded them during the experiment.
Thanks so much for clearing that up!
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