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According to Boyle's Law, the pressure P (in kilopascals) exerted by a gas varies inversely as the volume V (in cubic decimeters) of a gas if the temperature remains constant. That is, PV = c. Suppose the constant for oxygen at 25o is 505. Graph the function PV = c for c = 505.

a) In which two quadrants does your graph lie?

b) Determine the volume of oxygen if the pressure is 101 kilopascals.

c) Determine the volume of oxygen if the pressure is 50.5 kilopascals

d) Study your results for parts b and c. If the pressure is halved, make a conjecture about the effect on the volume of gas.

1 Answer

  • 5 years ago
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    Based upon the language of the problem, Pressure will be the variable dependent upon Volume. Therefore, Pressure appears on your Y-axis, and Volume on your X-axis. The graph is an inverse relationship, so it will be a curve asymptotic with both axes - the graph may not cross either axis. At a volume of 1, your Pressure will be 505; at a Pressure of 1, your Volume will be 1/505. The relationship, or equation of the curve, will simply be P= 505/V

    a) The only quadrant this graph may exist in is Quadrant I, with both positive Pressures and Volumes. Negative values of either quantity are forbidden - you cannot have a negative volume.

    b) V = 505/101 = 5 cubic decimeters.

    c) V = 505/50.5 = 10 cubic decimeters.

    d) If the pressure is halved, the volume is doubled. This is simply a repetition of the principle in the problem statement that volume and pressure are inversely related.

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