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Osmosis In Potato Cells Essay

2992 words - 12 pages

Osmosis in Potato Cells

I am going to do an experiment to find the concentration of solute in
potato cells. In order to find the best way to do this experiment I am
going to do a preliminary test first.

For my preliminary test I decided to use potato cylinders 3cm long and
I would see if the cylinders increased or decreased in mass. I used
salt solution in three different concentrates: 0.0M, 0.5M and 1.0M. I
put 20cm3 of each concentrate into 3 different boiling tubes, which
were then placed in test tube racks. I then placed a cylinder of
potato in each boiling tube and left them for three days. My results
were inconclusive because I left them in the solutions for too long so
the potato cylinders started growing mould. I tried to measure them to
see if any of them had increased or decreased in mass and I decided
that it would be easier, and more accurate if I weighed the potato
cylinders before and after putting them into the solution and if I
chopped a 3cm potato cylinder into small pieces to increase the
surface area. So although my preliminary test didn’t give me a range
of results to expect, I had discovered more accurate ways of doing the
experiment. I decided to use a wider range of concentrates, starting
with 0.0M (distilled water) and go up by 0.1M until I reach 1.0M and I
will only leave them for 2 days instead of 3.

My experiment must be as fair as possible so I obtain accurate
results. First of all I will carefully washed out 11 boiling tubes,
making sure there are no other chemicals left inside from previous
experiments. I will then prepare my solutions my mixing 1.0M with
distilled water (0.0M) until I have the right ratio for each
concentrate needed. I will use 20cm3 of solution in each boiling tube
and I will label the boiling tubes as I put each concentrate in so
that there was no chance of them getting mixed up. I will then use the
same potato to carefully cut 11 3cm long potato cylinders using an
apple corer. I will then cut each cylinder into 10 separate small
slices using a scalpel and carefully weigh them and take the mass to 2
decimal places. I will then record the masses and place them into the
solution, making sure I know which mass went into which solution. I
will leave them for 2 days and then weigh them again. I will then
repeat the experiment again so I can take an average of my results so
they are more accurate. I am doing the test this way because I feel
that this is the most accurate way I can perform this experiment
realistically in a school lab.

I will make sure it is a fair test by making sure that I put exactly
20cm3 of solution in each boiling tube, and that I mix the
concentrates accurately and wash out the measuring cylinders after
each measurement, making sure there are no drops of water or salt
solution left in the bottom. I must...

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