Fertilizers: Potassium and Compounds

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Creating a liquid fertilizer Experiment

Chemistry 1065

10/09/2012

Introduction
The aim of this experiment was to create a liquid fertilizer containing Nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus; each element had to have 8% mass percentage. We were also required to add an additional element, magnesium and it mass percentage had to be 1.5%. At the end of the experiment, the pH of our aqueous solution had to be between 6.0 and 7.0. As a group we predicted that we could not successfully create the liquid fertilizer with the compounds we were provided with, because some of the compounds would create a precipitate if mixed. As a result we decided that it would be take further experimentation of trying different combination of these compounds on small scale to help us successfully create the required fertilizer.

This experiment is important because it is necessary to make a plant fertilizer that is environment friendly and that provides various plants with the nutrients they need to grow. This experiment was interesting because gave us the chance to see get in the perspective of the scientists who constantly keep working towards making the best possible fertilizers for plants. Recent attempts by scientists of making the ‘ideal fertilizer have failed because either the fertilizer is not environment friendly or it increases the birth-rate of agricultural pests.

In this lab, we created several compound combinations to try and match the compounds in the required fertilizer. Some of our combinations worked, but some failed. We made adjustments to the original information provided to us in order to meet the standards of the required liquid fertilizer, and as a group we tried our best to indicate such adjustments throughout our lab reports so that the reader can be more informed about the experiment we did. .

Experimental
Because our prediction was that some of the provided compounds would not for an aqueous solution, we decided to try out some combinations on small scale to see how they reacted. The compounds we needed for these combinations were: Potassium carbonate, trisodium phosphate, potassium nitrate, ammonium carbonate, sodium phosphate, and sodium nitrate. We also needed some water to dissolve these compounds in. In order to perform a solubility test on the provided compounds we obtained a well plate, a spatula to add the solid compounds into the well plate, a beaker full of distilled water, a pipette to add water into the well plates containing two different compounds, and a stirring rod to stir the mixture. First using a spatula we took a small amount of K2CO3 and put in one of the wells on the well plate. Then we took a small sample of Na3PO4 and put it in the same well. Using a pipette we took 3ml of distilled water from the beaker and added it into the well containing K2CO3 and Na3PO4. The using a stirring rod, we continuously stirred the solution for 1 minute and we observed. Then we took small samples of K2Co3 and NH4Co3 and put them in a second well on the well plate. Then we added 3ml of water using a pipette. Using a stirring rod, we mixed the solution continuously for about a minute. Next we took small samples of NaNO3 and NaPO3 and put them in a third well on the well plate. We added some water using a pipette and stirred up the solution. Then we took samples of NaPO3 and KNO3 and put them in a fourth well in the well plate. We added 3 ml of water, stirred the solution and observed. Next we took samples of Na2PO3, K2CO3 and NaNO3 and put them in a fifth well. We added 3ml of water, constantly stirred the solution and observed. We then took samples of Na2PO3, K2CO3 and NaNO3 and put them in a sixth well plate. Then we added 3ml of water and constantly stirred the solution for a minute and observed. Through eliminating solutions that formed a precipitate we chose the solution containing, Na2PO3, K2CO3 and NaNO3 as the solution that could potentially be our liquid fertilizer because it contained nitrogen,...
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