In the Gunshot Residue Forensics Demonstration Kit, learn the chemical tests used by forensic scientists as they track down gunshot residue.
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When a gun is fired, a series of chemical reactions occurs and chemicals are quickly dispersed into the surrounding environment. The chemicals are likely to be on the gun, in the gun, on the shooter, in the air, on nearby objects, and on objects struck by the bullet. Learn the chemical tests used by forensic scientists as they track down gunshot residue. Revealing these unseen telltale chemical residues can be very significant at a crime scene and very motivating for your students. Includes enough materials to perform the demonstration at least seven times.
Concepts: Firearm chemistry, nitrate testing, lead testing, false positive, false negative, presumptive test.
Time Required: 15 minutes
Materials Provided: Cotton swabs, Beral-type pipets, diphenylamine solution, sodium rhodizonate solution, lead nitrate solution, copper nitrate solution.
Correlation to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
Science & Engineering Practices
Developing and using models
Analyzing and interpreting data
Disciplinary Core Ideas
MS-PS1.A: Structure and Properties of Matter
MS-PS1.B: Chemical Reactions
HS-PS1.A: Structure and Properties of Matter
HS-PS1.B: Chemical Reactions
Cause and effect
Structure and function