Frosty melts, Skittles decay

ImageIt was a fine January morning when Frosty set out for a walk. Unfortunately, Frosty was in Las Cruces, and as we all know Las Cruces doesn’t get cold in the winter, so he started to melt! When I found Frosty he had already melted 25 ml. He then proceeded to melt about 1 ml every two minutes. But, what time did the beloved Frosty step on to that scalding sidewalk and start to melt? To figure this out I divided the amount Frosty had melted when I found him (25ml), to the amount he had melted 30 minutes later (.37ml). This equals 67.56, so Frosty started melting 67 minutes ago. Since I found Frosty at 10:20 a.m, that means he started melting at 9:13 a.m. One thing I didn’t know was how much ice Frosty was made of, so I couldn’t figure out when he will melt completely, not that I would want to see that any way. 😥

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In the next lab, we used Skittles to demonstrate how atoms in a nucleus spontaneously decay, and found a predictable rate of decay. Using the data I collected, the graph had a slope that went gradually downward, as opposed to Frosty’s graph which was very linear and went upward. Since half-life is the time it takes for half of the atoms in a sample to decay, the half life of the skittles was how long it took for me to dump them out and separate the “healthy” from the decayed( so about 45 seconds). So, because the number of isotopes decrease as the number of tosses increase, they have a linear relationship, since they are both are progressing together. Image

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