Flame Test of Cations

Flame Test of Cations
Flame Test of Cations
Flame Test of Cations
Flame Test of Cations
Flame Test of Cations
Flame Test of Cations
Grade Levels
Resource Type
Product Rating
File Type

Word Document File

Be sure that you have an application to open this file type before downloading and/or purchasing.

63 KB|2 pages
Product Description

Students will try to solve a problem of a mysterious chemical in a barrel by performing flame tests on known cations in various compounds. Then they will test an unknown to solve the problem. I usually make the unknown strontium as it gives the best indicative color (red). You could also use Potassium Sulfate (Violet).

Teacher Prep:

1. Pour a small amount of each solution into 50 mL beakers for each lab station that you wish to have.

2. I have found that soaking wood popsicle sticks in the solution overnight makes the lab much easier and the flame more brilliant.

3. Each station will have the beaker with fluid, wooden stick soaked over-night, and a bunsen burner.

4. Give the students the unknown solution once they have tested the knowns for their baseline.


  • Identify a set of flame-test color standards for selected metal ions
  • Relate the color of flame test to the behavior of excited electrons in a metal ion
  • Identify an unknown metal ion by using a flame test
  • Demonstrate proficiency in performing a flame test


To determine what metal is contained in the barrels behind the Benetti’s house, you must first perform flame tests with a variety of standards solutions of different metal compounds. Then you will perform a flame test with an unknown sample from the site to see if it matches any of the solutions you have used as standards. Be sure to keep your equipment very clean and perform multiple trials to check your work


Your company has been contacted by Julius and Annette Benetti. They are worried about some abandoned, rusted barrels of chemicals that their daughter found while playing in the vacant lot behind their home. The barrels have begun to leak a colored liquid that flows through their property before emptying into a local sewer. The Benetti's want your company to identify the compound in the liquid. Earlier work indicates that it is a dissolved metal compound. Many metals such as lead have been determined to be hazardous to your health. Many compounds of these metals are often soluble in water and therefore easily absorbed into the body

Total Pages
2 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
55 minutes
Report this Resource
Digital Download
More products from Kaliumschemistry
Product Thumbnail
Product Thumbnail
Product Thumbnail
Product Thumbnail
Product Thumbnail
Teachers Pay Teachers

Teachers Pay Teachers is an online marketplace where teachers buy and sell original educational materials.

Learn More

Keep in Touch!

Sign Up