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Anita Salem, Mathematics, Rockhurst University

Paula Shorter, Mathematics, Computer Science, and Physics, Rockhurst University

Dale Harak, Chemistry, Rockhurst University

Area of Application: Chemistry

Mathematical Level: Calculus I

Purpose: The chemical technique of titration is used to determine the concentration of a substance in a solution. The purpose of this project is to construct a mathematical model describing the effects of titration, and then to use that model to determine the concentration and the identity of an acid in a solution by fitting the model to real titration data.

Prerequisites: No calculus is required for constructing the titration model, but optimization concepts involving first and second derivatives are used when further analyzing the model. Titration data collected by a student at Rockhurst University is provided. A computer algebra system (CAS) or graphing calculator is strongly recommended for the numerical and graphical analysis of the titration data.

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