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Osmosis Investigation

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Introduction

Osmosis - Plan Variable: Strength of water/sugar solution. Controlled: * Type of substance (in this case a potato chip). * Conditions i.e. they are all in the same light and heat. Outcome: The change in length/mass of the chip. Prediction - I predict that the stronger the solution (external) the more the potato chip will lose mass due to osmosis. I have based my prediction on the theory of osmosis. When plant cells are placed in water, the water enters the cells. Each cell is surrounded by a cell membrane. It separates of the cell from the outside. The cell membrane has tiny holes in it. This allows small molecules to pass through but not large ones. The cell membrane is partially permeable. Osmosis is a special kind of diffusion to do with water molecules. ...read more.

Middle

Analysis and Conclusion This experiment has yielded a graph which proves my point which I explained in my prediction. The graph gives me an excellent set of results. In my experiment the potato in the water had a 6% gain in length. The potato in the 0.2 molar sucrose solution had an increase in length of 2%, the potato in the o.4 molar solution had a increase in length of 1.2 %. The potato in the 0.6 molar solution had an increase of 0.6%, the potato in the 0.8 molar solution decreased by 1.4% and the solution in the 1 molar solution decreased by 2%. These prove that the higher the concentration of water in a cell the more it grows.The results also show that in the distilled water the potato gains in mass by approximently 7.4% then it gains 4.4% in the 0.25M solution. ...read more.

Conclusion

This part of the experiment is difficult to come up with an accurate and fair method, as other ways would also lead to some slight mistakes. Also the potato itself was not definitely from the same potato and was not exactly the same size, although I did try to cut them to 5cm each. 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. Finally, I could extend the experiment to a more exact level by looking at the potato cylinders under a microscope, then I would be able to see the cells in greater detail and draw some more observational results. ...read more.

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