If two solutions are separated by a selectively permeable membrane, will water flow from the hypo-osmotic solution into the hyper-osmotic, or vice versa?If solutions A and B are separated by a...

If two solutions are separated by a selectively permeable membrane, will water flow from the hypo-osmotic solution into the hyper-osmotic, or vice versa?

If solutions A and B are separated by a selectively permeable membrane will water move from the hyperosmotic solution into the hyposmotic solution, or vice versa?  Explain.

Asked on by angela-62

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boblawrence | (Level 1) Associate Educator

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A solution consists of a solute (such as salt) dissolved in water.

 

The concentration of solute molecules in the water determines the osmotic pressure or osmolality of the solution.  Odmotic pressure is a colligative property, meaning  it is a property that depends solely on molecular concentration, not the type of molecule.

 

When a selectively permeable membrane separates solutions of differing concentration, water will move across the membrane from the solution with lower osmolality into that with the higher osmotic pressure, until the concentrations equalize.

 

Solutions with high concentration of molecules are termed hyper-osmotic, and those with low concentration, hypo-osmotic.  So the answer to your question is that water will move from the hypo-osmotic solution into the hyper-osmotic solution.

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