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Favorite Demonstration: Demonstrating Indigo Carmine Oxidation-Reduction Reactions—A Choreography for Chemical Reactions

Journal of College Science Teaching—March/April 2008

The indigo carmine demonstration (Ferguson et al. 1973), also referred to as a traffic-light demonstration (Flinn Scientific 2007a), is an example of a set of oxidation-reduction reactions that occurs within one solution. This type of demonstration can be used to introduce the concept of chemical reaction to undergraduate nonscience majors. Through their observations guided by the instructor, students begin to develop and construct the following concepts: color changes, reaction rates, reversible reactions, energy requirements (endothermic/exothermic), and equilibrium.
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