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Chemistry Experiment on Mass, Volume and Density

The balance and the graduated cylinder are two apparatus that are of importance in chemistry. The table balance is an instrument that measures the mass of an object while the graduated cylinder is an instrument that measures the volume of liquid. In this experiment students will know the relationship between mass, volume and density.

Name _________________

Course & Section________




The balance (platform, triple beam or analytical) and the graduated cylinder are two pieces of chemistry apparatuses used in measurement. The balance is used for measuring the mass of an object and the graduated cylinder is used to measure the volume of the liquid or irregular objects.                                                   

 The Balance.  Although the balance differs in appearance and details in operation, the basic principles of operation are similar. 

                            Triple Beam Balance         

The Graduated Cylinder.  The graduated cylinder is the most frequently used apparatus in the measurement of the volume of liquids.                                                              


(a) To gain skill in the measurement of mass and volume.

(b) To design appropriate means to do accurate and precise measurement in relation to future seafaring life.

Apparatus /Materials:

Platform balance,  100 ml graduated cylinder, 250-ml beaker, block of wood, set of weights, ruler, small stone


1) Measure the mass of a given objects by means of a table balance. Measure the volume of a regular shape such as a wooden block with a ruler. Measure the volume of object having irregular in shape such as stone with graduated cylinder using displacement method. Record your results on the table provided by your instructor.

2) Measure 100 ml of water in a 100 ml graduated cylinder. Read the volume using the lower meniscus. (Upper meniscus is used for colored solutions.)

3) Repeat the same activity two time by adding and removing water from the cylinder until the volume coincides with the 100 ml graduation. Record your results on the table provided by your instructor.

4) Compute for the density by dividing the mass by its volume. Record your results on the table provided by your instructor.

Record of Results:

Table 1: Measurement of the mass

Trial      Mass of Small Stone       Mass of 100 ml Graduated Cylinder      Mass of Block of Wood

   1        _________________       ____________________________        _____________

   2        _________________       ____________________________        _____________

Total      _________________       ____________________________        _____________

Average   ________________       ____________________________        _____________

Table 2: Measurement of Volume

Trial     Volume of Small Stone    Volume of 100 ml Water    Volume of Block of Wood

   1       __________________     ___________________      __________________

   2       __________________     ___________________      __________________

Total    __________________     ___________________       __________________

Average _________________    ___________________       __________________

Table 3: Measurement of Density

Object         Small Stone       100 ml Water      Block of Wood

MASS          __________       __________       ___________

VOLUME     __________       __________       ___________

DENSITY     __________       __________      ____________

% Of Error = ______


Prepared by: Jessie R. Agudo, B.S. Civil Engg'/Master of Arts in Teaching Mathematics

For Discussions/Problems: If problems- SHOW YOUR SOLUTION.

  1. Is the density of a material affected by it's size? Support your answer. 
  2. Ships sink deeper in fresh water or in seawater/ Support your answer.
  3. Explain why a piece of iron may float in mercury but sink in water.
  4. A Nautical student measures a cube of lead to be 45.6 mm on each edge which has a mass of 408.90 grams. Calculate the density in g/cc.
  5. An Engineering student wants to calculate the density in g/cc of a piece of metal  measuring 3.0 mm by 0.80 dm and by 30 mm having a mass of 8.0g. What is the density in g/cc.

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