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I didn't do a Chem EE so am not going to say I know loads about it, but a couple of things I'd mention are that your topic seems firstly very broad and secondly like it'd be hard to do as an experiment. The best marks in science EEs tend to go to practical rather than research based experiments, i.e. experiments you've done yourself.

Other than that, read the EE guide and also the collection of 50 Excellent Extended Essays! They'll have the marking criteria, mock titles and give you an idea of what scores highly :D

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[quote name='tbib' post='42551' date='Apr 5 2009, 07:40 PM']would a creation and comparison of biofuels be an allowable/good topic for a chemistry EE?[/quote]


I would suggest you dont do fuels :) I truly believe that heavily researched topics should not be done in an EE. Not only will you never achieve and see the things you should in so little time, but you will leave very little impact on the reader who is currently developing and researching things like nitrogen based fuel in organic chemistry (actual newly established fuel). I saw this fuel develop locally and I thought, wow great idea, let me jump on it right now and write a chem paper. I went to my teacher, who is a chemical engineer and she told me how much is involved in fuel. I dont think 4,ooo words doubled is enough to write about it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I agree with using fuels will most probably give you a word count much above 4000 and a headache...

I'm also doing my EE on Chemistry. I think the focus of the EE should be put, instead of just comparing the different types of fuels, in doing an experimnt about them. Something like "Comparative study on biofuels and gasoline by analyse of specific combustion enthalpy", where you do research on energy released by different types of fuels using calorimetry... Or "Study of the byproducts of biofuels and gasoline combustion", trying to analyse the byproducts released by those fuels...

First of all, you would tell to narrow your theme; the comparison is interesting, but too wide. Second, get a profesor to be your tutor so that he can advise you...

Good luck!

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while that is a good topic, something else came into mind.

In either topic you are working with a combustion reaction, which is not an advisable thing to do. Also a lot of aromatic carbons are considered dangerous, because they are carcogens.

I was working in a lab, when someone put a carbon based crystal into water and the teacher told us all to evacuate. The substance forms a poisonous gas in presence of water.

Fuels are way to complex to work with, and the onyl time I would advice someone to wor kwith them is maybe if they are exploring the option: further organics.


Here is another thing I have a concern about. So IBO hires professors to grade these papers under the assumption that HL chem (which is where an EE for chem is advisable by IBO) will cover an elevated concept in chemistry. Do you see what I mean? So these professors and teachers sign up for the grading, and IBO s hoping that what you have written about will fit into their frame work of mind without knowing and adhering to a sylabus. see its easy if a chemistry IB teacher grades these. They know the potential and extent to which fuels are covered and can see exactly what you are trying to say, always taking note of the statements in their mind. A professor will look at your paper and wonder why viscosity wasnt covered on a chemical aspect, why molarity used is not in increments of as certain quantity that will yield enough hydrogen ions to contribute to a small change in PH, or why you are writing about something so typical and already established. I dunno. I was taught and told over and over again my a chemical engineer that a research scientist will laugh at the work you produce, unless you do something that is mind-blowing.

Here is a fuel based topic worthy of EE in IB along with a strong, very strong adviser:

"What is the rate of C-Cl bonds being broken at different intensity of ultraviolet light at 2,000 ft elevation"
Problem: health hazards that need to be controlled

Best of luck :S

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I did mine on chemistry, about fuel specifically. Ethanol and petrol.

My experiment was very succesful and the EE was really good. Although, I did make my Topic focused.

I wouldnt see a problem in doing that, just make it more focused.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Its a good question just make sure that it is narrow and focused. For example, i am doing mine on "Determining the calcium ion concentrations present in Evian, Volvic, spa, vittel and Chaude Fontaine commercial mineral waters in order to determine the healthiest one"

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  • 5 weeks later...

i'm doing my EE on chemistry too. my topic is on caffeine extraction, but i'm not quite sure what my focused topic is.
does anyone have any suggestions or ideas on caffeine extraction experiments? i could really use some help :P

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