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Metals in maritime environments

Type: Teacher-led

$350 per group (max 15 students)
250 min
11 10
Metals in Maritime Environments

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About the program

A Depth Study for Year 11 Chemistry

This program provides 4-5 indicative hours of course time and relates to Modules 2 & 3 of the NSW Year 11 Chemistry syllabus, covering Quantitative Chemistry and Reactive Chemistry. The excursion involves a presentation on the principles of chemistry in maritime environments, a practical workshop where students use their knowledge of chemical reactions and handle actual maritime artefacts, and a museum tour looking at conservation practices of maritime-based metal objects in-situ, and a visit to our Navy vessels. There is also an opportunity for students to conduct individual fieldwork. An informative workbook is available for this program.

Program structure


Students participate in hands-on experiments that involve predicting, testing and recording findings on activity sheets in the workbook. They examine artefacts from an Australian shipwreck and watch a Powerpoint presentation on the chemistry of maritime environments. Students will also view films on the recovery of the Bounty cannon and the maintenance of the submarine HMAS Onslow.

Tour & Vessels

Students visit various displays in the museum and outside, looking at metal objects in-situ and learning about the conservation process. Students are encouraged to ask questions, take photographs and fill out relevant sections of the workbook. The vessels are a self-guided experience where students look for signs of corrosion and possible treatments. Schools are welcome to stay after the tour for students to conduct their own fieldwork. 


Curriculum references (NSW)

Year 11 Chemistry  

Module 2 – Introduction to Quantitative Chemistry  

Module 3 – Reactive Chemistry

Outcomes: CH 11-8; CH11-9; CH11-10; Ch11-11; CH 11/12 1-7

Further information

Teachers and supervising adults visit FREE of charge within the ratios specified in Plan Your School Visit.

  • Program duration: 4 hours including breaks
  • Entry to exhibitions and vessels: bookings include free entry to museum exhibitions, Action Stations and destroyer HMAS Vampire (a supervisor/student ratio of 1:15 applies on HMAS Vampire).
  • Location: Peter Doyle Learning Centre, Australian National Maritime Museum, 2 Murray Street, Darling Harbour, Sydney.