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Why is it sometimes difficult to distinguish between a pure liquid and a solution, and...

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mark222 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 2) Honors

Posted September 5, 2011 at 11:34 AM via web

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Why is it sometimes difficult to distinguish between a pure liquid and a solution, and how can they be distinguished?

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justaguide | College Teacher | (Level 2) Distinguished Educator

Posted September 5, 2011 at 11:35 PM (Answer #1)

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It is difficult to distinguish between a pure liquid and a solution created using it when there is no change in appearance. For example it is not possible to differentiate between pure water and a solution of common salt just by looking at the two as the salt is transparent and does not impart any color to the water.

To identify the solution, other changes in the properties of the liquid can be used. For example, when a solute is dissolved in a liquid to create a solution, the density of the solution is higher than that of the liquid. In many cases the freezing and boiling point of the liquid changes. These other changes can be used to easily identify a solution if there is no change in the way it looks.

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