Solutions - Key terms


A term describing a solution in which a substance or substances are dissolved in water.


A substance made up of atoms of more than one element, which are chemically bonded and usually joined inmolecules. The composition of a compound is always the same, unless it is changed chemically.


A qualitative term describing a solution with a relatively largeratio of solute to solvent.


A qualitative term describing a solution with a relatively small ratio of solute to solvent.


A surfactant. (Usually the term "emulsifier" is applied to foods, and "surfactant" to detergents and other inedible products.)


A mixture of two immiscible liquids, such as oil and water, made by dispersing microscopic droplets of one liquid in another. In creating an emulsion, surfactants act as bridges between the two liquids.


A term describing a mixture that is not the same throughout; rather, it has various regions possessing different properties. One example of this is sand in a container of water. Rather than dissolving to form a homogeneous mixture as sugar does, the sand sinks to the bottom.


A term describing a mixture that is the same throughout, as for example when sugar is fully dissolved in water. A solution is a homogenous mixture.


Possessing a negligible value of miscibility.


A quantitative means of measuring solubility in terms of the mass of the solute divided by the mass of the solution, multiplied by 100%.


A term identifying the relative ability of two substances to dissolve in one another. Miscibility is qualitative, like "fast" or "slow"; solubility, on the other hand, can be a quantitative term.


A substance with a variable composition, composed of molecules or atoms of differing types. Compare with pure substance.


A quantitative means of showing the concentration of solute to solution. This is measured in moles of solute per liter of solution, abbreviatedmol/L.


A substance—either an element or compound—that has an unvarying composition. This means that by changing the proportions of atoms, the result would be an entirely differentsubstance. Compare with mixture.


Involving a comparison between qualities that are not precisely defined, such as "fast" and "slow" or "warm" and "cold."


Involving a comparison between precise quantities—for instance, 10 lb vs. 100 lb, or 50 MPH vs. 120 MPH.


A qualitative term describing a solution that contains as much solute as it can dissolve at a giventemperature.


In a broad, qualitative sense, solubility refers to the property of being soluble. Chemists, however, usually apply the word in a quantitative sense, to indicate the maximum amount of a substance that dissolves in a given amount of solvent at a specific temperature. Solubilityis usually expressed in grams of solute per100 g of solvent.


Capable of dissolving in a solvent.


The substance or substances that are dissolved in a solvent to form a solution.


A homogeneous mixture in which one or more substances (thesolute) is dissolved in a solvent—for example, sugar dissolved in water.


The substance or substances that dissolve a solute to form a solution.


A substance made up of molecules that are both water-and oil-soluble, which acts as an agent for joining other substances in an emulsion.


A term describing a solution that is capable of dissolving additional solute, if that solute is introduced to it.

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