Name: __________________________ Per#:_______        Date: ____________ Score: _______/100

Acid Rain Lab


        During this lab we will be using hydrochloric acid. You must wear goggles at all times. You must not throw any materials. You must walk slowly and carefully at all times during this lab. Perform this lab in pairs or triples. Obtain the materials (goggles, 3 pH strips, 3 chalk pieces,  3 cups). Send one member from the group to the filling station to create 3 test cups, one that is tap water(A), one that is weak acid(B), and one that is strong acid(C). Label these cups A, B, C. Measure the pH of each using the test strips. Write down the pH on your chart. One by one, drop a piece of chalk into a cup and record your observations of the reaction.


Draw out your materials and label them here

What are the safety precautions for this lab?

Experiment and Data

Research Question: How does the acidity of rain (its pH) affect its ability to dissolve chalk?

List the steps from the procedure then draw out your lab setup.



Observations (description or a drawing)

Cup A (tap water)

Cup B (weak acid)

Cup C (strong acid)

Conclusion Questions

1. Certain sedimentary rocks will dissolve in acid rain because they contain the mineral calcite. List a few rocks that contain calcite:

2. At what stage(s) of the water cycle are rocks weathered? How do you know?

3. At what stage(s) of the water cycle is deposition occurring? How do you know?

4. Starting with the word Evaporation, follow the arrows to make a step by step list that goes through at least six different changes. You may include some changes more than once. (there are multiple correct answers to this task)


5. Rain becomes acidic when there are a lot of greenhouse gases being released. List a few human sources of greenhouse gases, then list some natural sources.

Connect this lab to the real world by

a) Explain what the experiment is simulating in the real world

b) Why is it important to understand how the pH of rain affects certain minerals?

c) Explain the limitations of this lab. What are some variables we are not taking into account? How can we improve this lab to simulate reality better?

For the multiple choice questions below, pick an answer and explain why you chose it for full credit. Answers without explanations will only receive half credit if correct, and no credit if incorrect.


Answer and Explanation

1)The well-defined boundaries of New York State’s several distinct landscape regions are based on

  1. differences in bedrock composition and structure
  2. extreme differences in climate
  3. varieties of vegetation
  4. rate of sediment deposition

2)Which two New York State landscape regions are formed mostly of surface bedrock that is approximately the same geologic age?

  1. Manhattan Prong and Atlantic Coastal Plain
  2. Erie-Ontario Lowlands and Adirondack Mountains
  3. Adirondack Mountains and Allegheny Plateau
  4. Tug Hill Plateau and St. Lawrence Lowlands

3)Landscapes with horizontal bedrock structure, steep slopes, and high elevations are classified as

  1. plateau regions
  2. plain regions
  3. lowland regions
  4. mountain region

4)Which stream drainage pattern below is most commonly found in areas with nearly level land surface?

5)Which rock layer shows the greatest evidence of erosion?

  1. A         2. B            3. C                4. D


Answer and Explanation

6)The maps represent three different stream drainage patterns

Which statement is generally true of the three stream drainage patterns shown?

  1. All are controlled by underlying bedrock structure.
  2. All are in the old-age stage of stream development.
  3. All are located in semiarid regions.
  4. All are located in areas where deposition is greater than erosion.

7)The diagram represents a surface stream drainage pattern.

Which geologic cross section below represents a landscape region most likely to produce this drainage pattern?

8)An environmental scientist needs to prepare a report on the potential effects that a proposed surface mine in New York State will have on the watershed where the mine will be located. In which reference materials will the scientist find the most useful data with which to determine the watershed’s boundaries?

  1. topographic maps
  2. geologic time scales
  3. tectonic plate maps
  4. planetary wind maps