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What are the different types of calorimeters?

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Quick Answer

There are many different types of calorimeters, such as accelerated rate calorimeters, titration calorimeters, scanning calorimeters and isothermal microcalorimeters. Each of these instruments measures heat or heat capacity.

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Full Answer

Calorimeters are instruments that are used to measure the heat that is emitted or taken away from a specific process. They have greatly helped scientists determine properties for both physical changes and chemical reactions. For instance, a calorimeter could be used to measure the heat effect of the boiling of water. Different styles of calorimeters use different techniques to evaluate the heat effect of a process. Within the different styles of calorimeters, such as titration and scanning calorimeters, are specific types of calorimeters, such as the coffee cup calorimeter, the bomb calorimeter and the gas/water absorption calorimeter.

A coffee cup calorimeter is a simple form of calorimeter in which a thermometer is placed in a Styrofoam cup above some sort of combustion instrument. This type of calorimeter can easily determine the heat effects of boiling various liquids.

The bomb calorimeter is an instrument where a reaction occurs within a sealed chamber underwater. The thermometer measures the temperature change of the water, giving insight into the heat effect of the reaction within the sealed chamber.

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