Chemistry experiment

Welcome to the online chemistry experiment.
In this experiment you will synthesize methyl orange. Methyl orange is used as a dye in the textile industry. It is also used as an indicator for acid-base reactions. Methyl orange is an azoic color. The problem is that there are indications that these colors are carcinogenic and therefore controversial in the industry. The question is, how can we produce methyl orange in small scale and also produce a high yield and thereby reducing the possible risks? In this experiment you will try to produce high yields of methyl orange by flow chemistry.

This chemistry experiment is designed for pre-university students. Read the short description about this experiment.

Chemistry experiment
Set-up chemistry experiment

Class room activity

In order to become familiar with the inquiry the teacher conducts a demonstration in class. Then the students do a guide experiment and analyze an inquiry done by Haenen, Van Harmelen & Oortwijn (2012). These three student researchers investigated optimal flow rates to produce methyl orange in a micro reactor. The students can improve this inquiry: student workbook and teacher’s guide.

Individual activity

Before you start the experiment, you need to work through the student workbook first. This student workbook gives you all the information about the online synthesis of methyl orange.


In this manual you find all information on the experiment: How to make a reservation, how the apparatus works, how to set-up experiments and how to perform the experiments.

The experiment

To get access to the experiment, mail Hans van Dijk.


Webcam 1 (Controller of reactor)
Webcam 2 (Reactor)
Webcam 3 (End product Methyl orange)

Experiences in class

Teachers with a membership for the Journal of Chemical Education can read the article that has been written about this project.

Best Inquiry 2013

The best inquiry 2013 has been written by Steffen Bötzel, Matthias Fischer and Fabian Roweda from Gymnasium Holthausen, Hattingen, Germany. Their teacher is mrs. Pratke.
'Synthesis of methyl orange in a micro reactor'