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An Experiment to Investigate the Effects of Varying Sucrose Concentration on the Mass of Potato Chips.

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Introduction

Kunal Shrivastava 20/07/03 An Experiment to Investigate the Effects of Varying Sucrose Concentration on the Mass of Potato Chips The aim of my experiment is to investigate the effect of varying the concentration of sucrose on a potato chip. I aim to observe the change in mass, and I hope to view what happens to the chips as the concentration increases, and I hope to see the effect that osmosis has on the chip. The experiment that I am conducting uses the process of osmosis. Osmosis is the movement of water molecules across a partially permeable membrane from a region of high water concentration to a region of low water concentration. Partially-permeable membranes are very thin layers of material which allow some substances to pass through them but prevent other substances from passing through. For example, a partially permeable membrane may allow water molecules to pass through it, but may not allow larger molecules such as Glucose to pass through. An example of a partially permeable membrane is visking tubing, which is also known as 'dialysis tubing.' Visking tubing is a partially permeable membrane with tiny pores, which allows small molecules such as water to pass through but does not allow larger molecules such as sugar. If solutions of different concentration are on either side of the visking membrane, water molecules will pass through and tend to dilute the more concentrated solution, hence the idea of osmosis. Below is an example of osmosis. ...read more.

Middle

It will loose mass if the concentration of water is higher in the potato chip, than it is in the medium. So therefore, I think that if the concentration of sucrose is less that means that there is a higher concentration of water in the liquid, meaning the net movement of water molecules will be from the solution, to inside the potato chip, which will lead to a gain in mass of the potato chip. If the sucrose solution has a higher concentration of sucrose, than this means that the concentration of water will be less, meaning that the water molecules from inside the potato chip will diffuse by osmosis out of the chip, therefore the net movement will be from the chip to the solution, resulting in a loss of mass. Method Underneath my method you will find a list of apparatus which I used to conduct this experiment/investigation. I will start by collecting all my apparatus which can be found on the following list. I am going to use three test tubes for each concentration of sucrose so that I can get an average, and therefore it will be a fair test. I will fill my test tubes to the 20ml point with the given amount of sucrose concentration, which is either, 0%, 10%, 20%, 30% or 40%. The reason for these different amounts is so that we have a fair test, and so that we can see the affect of increasing concentration. ...read more.

Conclusion

At this point, the water particles inside the potato are at a higher concentration than there is in the solution, therefore osmosis takes place from the potato to the solution. If the sucrose concentration is even higher (40%) then the concentration of water particles is even higher in the potato, meaning the rate of osmosis is faster. My test could have been improved by using different apparatus. For example, we could have used a lot more hi-tech equipment, such as data logging equipment or scientific computers to conduct the experiment. I could have also repeated my test a dozen times to be sure and also to create a fair test. The reason that these ideas were not approached was because it is time consuming to repeat the experiment so many times, and it is too expensive to buy such hi-tech equipment. I think that I could have improved in one or two areas; such as wiping of the excess water from the potatoes using a towel. The towels could have either wiped off and absorbed a bit of water or just pushed the water into the potato. If this did happen, then it would change the mass of the potato. Another way of improving the results would have been to leave the experiment running longer, this would have enabled me to find the saturation point (when the potato can no longer take in any more water) and dehydration point (when the potato cannot lose any more water)and therefore get a more accurate result. Basically, my test was a success, as the results and graph shows. I did not get any anomalies, and I did not make any mistakes. ...read more.

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