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The programme shows how the great variety of elements can be systemised into a Periodic Table. Both the Mendeleevan and the modern long form of the Periodic Table are examined.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: S101, Science: a foundation course
Item code: S101; 13
First transmission date: 29-05-1979
Published: 1979
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:24:00
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Producer: David Jackson
Contributor: David Johnson
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Chemical formulae; Periodic table
Subject terms: Chemical elements; Periodic law
Footage description: David Johnson introduces the programme. To illustrate some of the wide variety of properties found among the elements, Johnson demonstrates the properties of some gases. Shots of a flame being re-kindled in a beaker of pure oxygen, of chlorine gas in a beaker and of film footage of a WW1 chlorine gas attack. Also shots of helium and hydrogen filled balloons being released and film footage of the Hindenburg airship disaster. Johnson goes on to demonstrate some of the properties of solid elements. Shots of sulphur springs near Bristol and of Johnson demonstrate the electrical conductivity of sulphur and of aluminium. He goes on to look at the great differences in melting points of different metals. Shots of mercury, caesium, molten iron, and a tungsten sample. Quoting from a paper by Mendeleev to the Russian Chemical Society in 1869 Johnson briefly explains how the idea of periodicity was introduced to put order among the elements. in animated sequence is used to lay out the Elements in the periodic order devised by Mendeleev. Johnson (voice over) provides the commentary. Johnson then explains that the elements, contained in a group in the periodic table, share similar properties. He has with him several balloons, each filled with one of the noble gases. Film shots of the six alkali metals being cut with a knife. Johnson (voice over) points out the oxidation which quickly appears on the cut surface. Johnson next does an experiment which tests the reaction of the alkali metals to water. In order to demonstrate that regular changes occur as one moves across a period of the table, Johnson reacts fluorine with each of the elements of one period in turn. Animated diagrams also help to illustrate his points. David Johnson points out the importance of chemical formulas for establishing common characteristics of elements, particularly where visual inspection of reactions does not obviously show trends. Animated diagrams and demonstrations of reactions help to illustrate his points. The demonstrations include the burning of aluminium powder in air, phosphorous burning in oxygen gas, and a diamond burning in liquid oxygen. The product of burnt silicon (but not the reaction) is also shown. With the aid of an animated periodic table and shot of elements belonging to two sub-groups immersed in water ( one sub-group reacts strongly, the other not at all), Johnson points out some of the weakness of Mendeleev's periodic table. Johnson (voice over an animated periodic table) shows how the more modern long form of periodic table overcomes the weaknesses of Mendeleev's table. Johnson sums up the programme.
Master spool number: 6HT/72860
Production number: FOUS013Y
Videofinder number: 1188
Available to public: no