Minor question on "Where does the candle wax go?"

In here, besides explaining the some of our grade 12/13 chemistry and biology, Cecil claims Faraday used to demonstrate burning produced water by holding a flask of ice above the candle.

My question is, since it seems likely the flask of ice was to cause water from the candle to condense on the flask, how would the above experiment distinguish between that and condensation already in the air?

I could understand an experiment in a closed system with a supply of oxygen, but the above method wouldn’t impress me that much - even without MTV.

I don’t know how Faraday did it, but the classic application of a controlled experiment would be pretty easy. Just take two flask of ice, hold them at roughly the same location, with a candle under one of them. The experimental flask should get more water droplets on it, since the candle is convecting (don’t know if that is a word) steam onto it; the control group should sweat only a moderate amount.

That’s how I would do it. Don’t know how to measure the amount of condensation, though. I’d just rely on everyone going “ooh” and “ahh” to prove the point. chuckle

I supposed, and I was thinking of that when I posted. Unfortunately, I couldn’t visualize the amount of sweating between the two flasks to be dramatically different. Hardly enough for that audience ooohing, and ahhhing. And anyway, Cecil only said a single flask.
Just nitpicking though. :slight_smile:

I guess even the two-flask experiment isn’t totally conclusive. You could still theorize that it’s just the convection carrying additional water to the flask, but that the water is already in the surrounding air.

I suppose people back then didn’t pick nits like we do.