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Innovating Science™ Small Group Learning: Forensic Chemistry Of Unknown Substances

In this experiment, students will use observation skills, senses, and chemical tests on a series of known substances as well as two unknown substances and then attempt to identify the mystery substances based on observations and recorded data.

Supplier:  Aldon Corporation IS9006SGL

Catalog No. S40748

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WARNING: This product can expose you to chemicals including Respirable crystalline silica, which is known to the State of California to cause cancer.  For more information go to



Often times, when collecting evidence at a crime scene, investigators may recover substances they are unable to identify in the field. Along with evidence such as fingerprints, hair, fibers, etc., there may be traces of unknown chemicals or powders left behind by the perpetrator or perpetrators. Evidence of this nature is sent to the crime lab for identification.

  • Activity includes a Teachers Manual and Student Guide and Analysis copymasters
  • Material for 5 groups
  • Aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
  • Disciplinary Core Ideas: PS1.A; PS1.B
  • Performance Expectations: MS-PS1-2
  • Cross Cutting Concepts: Patterns
  • Engineering Practices: Analyzing and Interpreting Data


Next Gen Aligned
7 to 14
Cardboard Box Kit
13 to 20
10 Reaction Plates; 10g Baking Powder; 10g Baking Soda; 10g Corn Starch; 10g Talcum Powder; 10g Salt; 10g Gelatin; 10g Mystery Substance #1; 10g Mystery Substance #2; 10 mL Biuret Reagent; 10 mL Dilute Lugol’s Iodine; 10 mL Acetic Acid
Education Kit
9 x 6 x 4 in.


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WARNING: This product can expose you to chemicals including Respirable Crystalline Silica, which is known to the State of California to cause cancer.