Topics: Beet, Laboratory glassware, Gas Pages: 5 (1088 words) Published: January 31, 2005
The Effect of temperature on beetroot

This experiment is designed to investigate the effect of varying temperature (centigrade) on beetroot and its cells.

My earlier experiment suggest that as temperature increases the integrity of the beetroot cell membrane will be destroyed and a subsequent release of beetroot pigment will be released into its surrounding milieu(in this case distilled water).

In the experiment I will examine if my hypothesis (above) is correct. In order to conduct this experiment I would choose a dependent variable as well as an independent one. The independent variable is the temperature at different degrees. 6 different temperatures (around: 10˚, 20˚, 30˚, 40˚, 50˚, 60˚) will be applied.

The dependent variable is the beetroot specimens identically selected.

Control process

Beetroot samples: The same size beetroots will be used throughout the experiment this is to ensure that the impact of the temperature on every sample will stay the same, i.e. if having a bigger beetroot sample less pigments will be released into the test tube at lower temperature, or having a smaller beetroot sample more pigment will be released into the test tube. This error will change the results of the experiment at large. Therefore it is important to insure the sample sizes are the same.

Temperature: As temperature will affect the beetroot cell membrane, I will keep the temperature constant throughout the experiment by using a water bath and measuring the desired temperature using a thermometer.

PH: I will make sure that the pH is stable (constant) and only the temperature varies this is to be done by using buffer in every test tube so as to maintain pH balance for each beetroot sample and insure that pH does not become a variable. PH is important for maintaining the integrity of the cell membrane as integral proteins can denature upon change in pH. Also, presumably the buffer will have the right concentrations of salt or electrolyte's (ion such as Na, K, Ca, etc.)- that is, the solution and the beetroot cells must be isotonic, so the buffer must be used for each trial-to ensure that the beetroot cell doesn't lyse due to being placed in hypotonic solution

Additional controls

Time: Amount of time beetroot sample remains in a test tube must remain the same for each trial

Cutting Beetroot: Results could be affected by pigment released due to cutting of beetroot, so wash of initial pigment (excess juice) at the start.




Safety goggles


Water Bath

3 250ml beakers






19 test tubes (9 in water bath, 9 for when needed for colorimeter and so does not contain specimen, and 1 for resetting the colorimeter).

10ml measuring cylinder

10mm cork borer

Test tube holder


1. Wear gloves and safety goggles, to insure hand are kept clean and that no substances can go into the eye.

2. Cut the beetroot in approximately in half with a knife, so it can be pierced by the cork borer and a cylinder shape specimen can be taken.

3. Pierce the beetroot with a 10mm cork borer, may needed to be pierce at least three times so that there is enough beetroot for the experiment.

4. Using a scalpel cut the pierced beetroot into discs 5mm along it (use ruler to measure), this is to allow it to fit into the test tube and so you have the same size beetroots and so a fair test.

5. Rinse beetroot discs by using distilled water, keep pouring distilled water till the water coming of it becomes colourless rather then red/purple. This is so that no excess 'juice' is on each disc after being cut.

6. Clean (rinse) each test tube which is needed, with distilled water to make sure no excess substances are present, so affecting the experiments results.

7. Set the water bath to desired temperature and keep it at a constant, so that when needed the temperature is just right and less time is wasted....
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