Osmosis Investigation

Essay by xendon November 2006

download word file, 4 pages 2.0

Definition and Explanation of Osmosis:-

The experiment shown above demonstrates the process of osmosis. Water flows through a semi permeable membrane into a sugar solution, diluting the solution. The sugar molecules cannot pass through the membrane, so the water outside remains pure. I predict that depending on the concentration of water, osmosis will happen at different rates of the different stages. I know this because "Osmosis is the passage of water from a solution through a semi-permeable membrane to a more concentrated solution"

Osmosis in Plant Cells:-

Plant cells have features which help them when taking in water by osmosis like the strong cell wall supporting the structure when the cell starts to swell, preventing the cell from bursting. These types of cells become turgid when put in dilute solutions, meaning the pressure inside the cell increases until no more water can be taken in. Turgidity is import for plants so that the green plants of cells point towards the sunlight.

Hypertonic solutions contain a high concentration of a solute compared to another solution (e.g. the cell's cytoplasm). When a cell is placed in a hypertonic solution, the water diffuses out of the cell, causing the cell to shrivel. And when they contain a low concentration of solute relative to another solution, the water diffuses into the cell, causing the cell to swell and maybe explode.

Osmosis in Animal Cells:-

Animal cells are different to plant cells when in sugar solutions because they do not have a cell wall. In very dilute solutions, animal cells swell up and eventually burst. This is because there is no cell wall compared to plant cells to make them turgid. In concentrated solutions, water is absorbed out of the cell and the cell eventually shrinks, leading to a problem as well. Therefore...