Lab # Diaper Testing (Oh, Baby!) due: ______________
Problem A: Which diaper will be able to hold the most liquid?
Problem B: Does every diaper have the same degree of purity in the sodium
polyacrylate it contains?
Research: How does a diaper function? What would you think would prove
which diaper is the best? How will you test this? What is sodium polyacrylate
and how does it work?
II. Hypothesis: If we test for the amount of sodium polyacrylate in diapers, then
I think __________ will have the most because ______________________.
III. Materials and Methods:
Materials: different brands of diapers, gallon zip lock bags, plastic cups, scales,
water, graduated cylinder
1. Open up a diaper and cut down the middle of the composite fiber part so
that it can be separated from the plastic lining.
2. Put all the cotton into a gallon Ziploc bag and make sure it is closed
3. Shake the composite fiber until the sodium polyacrylate powder is
shaken out and is at the corner and bottom of the bag.
4. Carefully remove all the cotton from the bag and add the sodium
polyacrylate powder to the cup for that brand of diaper. Don’t put it in
the cup for the other brand!
5. When everyone has finished this step get the total mass and divide it by
diaper. Make a bar graph showing the average amounts per diaper
1. Measure 0.5 grams of sodium polyacrylate from one of the brands and
put it into a plastic cup.
2. Filling a graduated cylinder with 100 mL of water, begin adding tap
water in increments using a pipette. KEEP TRACK OF HOW MUCH
WATER YOU ADD!
3. After the saturation level for the powder has been reached (it can
absorb no more water), record total amount of water absorbed.
4. Record all your data on the overhead, then get the average saturation
amount for each diaper and make a bar graph showing the data per
Data Table for Problem A: Amount of Sodium Polyacrylate per Diaper Brand
Diaper Brands No. of Diapers Total Mass of Average Mass of
Tested Sodium Polyacrylate Sodium Polyacrylate
Data Table for Problem B: Saturation Amount of Sodium Polyacrylate per Diaper Brand
Diaper Brand Saturation Total Number Total Saturation Average
Amount for all of Saturation
Amount in my of Diapers this brand of Amount for this
group’s trials Tested Diapers brand of Diaper
Analysis of Data:
Graph for problem A: Explain which is the better diaper brand.
Graph for problem B: Which brand had the better quality absorbent?
How did performing this lab allow you to solve problem A? To solve problem B?
Explain how the data either supported or rejected your hypothesis.
Give two more criteria that could evaluate diapers. What are possible experiments
you could perform on diapers to test for those criteria?
What is another experiment you could perform with sodium polyacrylate?
Explain two more ways you could use sodium polyacrylate in a real life situation.
What are three possible errors that could invalidate your data?
What are three possible improvements you could make to this lab?
What did you like/dislike about doing this lab?
What is the easiest/most difficult part of doing this lab?