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This practical is designed to investigate how osmotic activity is related to the surface area to volume ratio of a potato. The surface area to volume ratio is very important in living organisms. For example, Amoebas are uni-cellular organisms with a very large surface area to volume ratio. This is crucial for them, as they absorb all of their oxygen through their membrane. If they were any bigger the cells in the middle would die because the diffusion distance would be too big. They would then need lungs, like mammals have. These have a large surface area to volume ratio so that the oxygen can diffuse into their blood stream and be transported around the organism.
Apart from the diffusion of substances, surface area to volume ratio is also important in heat loss. A small mammal like a mouse has a large surface area to volume ratio, so it will loose a lot of heat through its skin. This is why they have fur coats, to keep the heat from escaping. But a large mammal like an elephant needs a larger surface area to volume ratio to disperse of its body heat, so
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