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Experiment to find out the changes of mass in potato chips due to osmosis.

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Experiment to find out the changes of mass in potato chips due to osmosis. Aim: We have been asked to investigate the effect that osmosis has on potato chips. Prediction: I predict that the potato cylinder in the lowest sugar solution (water) will gain the most mass through osmosis, whereas the 80% sugar concentration will lose the most mass through osmosis. I predict this because I think that the potato chips will try to gain and lose water between the two sides of its cell wall in order to reach an equilibrium between them. Because the 80% sugar solution has a high amount of sugar molecules, which can not diffuse through the membrane, I think that the potato will lose water in order to make the solution on the outside of its membrane equal to the water concentration on the inside (thus losing mass). I also predict that the other concentrations (60%, 40%, and 20%) will lose mass, but in lower numbers compared to the 80% sugar solution (the lower the concentration, the higher the mass). However, since the distilled water carries no sugar molecules, I think that the potato chip will gain water to create a balance between the two sides of the cell wall, making it gain mass. Scientific background: Osmosis is the diffusion of water molecules through a selectively permeable membrane from a region of high water concentration to a region of low water concentration. ...read more.


6. We must keep the potatoes in their solutions for the same lengths of time. 7. We must use the same balance to measure all of the chips. 8. We must try to keep the chips in the same volumes of solution. 9. We must put all of the chips into their solutions at the same time. 10. We must be careful not to squeeze the chips when taking them out of their solutions. Reliability: To ensure reliability, I have used another group's results. Safety: > All of the test tubes will be kept in a test tube holder so that they won't drop over as easily. > All of the potatoes will be cut on a white tile to reduce the risk of anybody getting cut. > Be careful when carrying a knife around the laboratory. > Be careful when using the knife, as it could slip and injure you. > Wash your hands after the experiment. My results: Concentration. 80% 60% 40% 20% 0% Sugar/water volume (cm�) 15 15 15 15 15 Original potato chip length (cm) 4 4 4 4 4 New potato chip length (cm) 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.8 4.2 Difference +/- in length (cm) -0.7 -0.6 -0.5 -0.2 +0.2 Original potato chip mass (g) 0.15 0.2 0.19 0.21 0.19 New potato chip mass (g) 0.08 0.12 0.13 0.19 0.20 Difference +/- in mass. (g) -0.07 -0.08 -0.06 -0.02 +0.01 Flexibility. Very Flaccid More flaccid. ...read more.


However, since they lie close to the line of best fit, they show that the results we obtained were quite accurate. Looking at my graph to show the lengths of the potato chips, I can see 1 anomalous result. Likewise, this result lies close to the line of best fit, meaning that the results are quite accurate. Anomalous results could have occurred do to us not repeating results, which could have given us a better average, and thus produced a better graph. Another reason that anomalous results may have occurred is that there was a mistake while mixing the concentrations due to human error when pouring in solutions. Also, the potato chips may have been measured incorrectly, again due to human error. If I was to do this experiment again, there are a number of things that I would have done differently. For example, I would have used a potato borer to cut the potato to make sure that all of the chips were the same shape, and thus easier to cut into the lengths that we wanted. More variables could have been used to make the experiment more interesting and educational. Another experiment that we could do to test osmosis is to take some visking tubing, knot it and half fill with starch solution, half fill with glucose solution. Then put it in a test tube full of water. Leave this for a while, then test the water for starch using iodine solution and test inside the visking tubing for glucose using benedict's solution. ...read more.

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