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A mixture of water and lemon juice to make a solution

A solution is a homogeneous mixture that can be composed of two or more substances. It is formed when a solute is dissolved in a solvent - sugar dissolving in water. [1] Chemistry is mainly dominated by the study of species in solution.

Solution formation

Solution formation

In a solution the compositions of the solvent and the solute determine whether or not a substance will dissolve. The temperature of the solute/solvent in a solution, the motion; whether it is being stirred or shaken, and finally the surface area of the dissolving particles will determine how fast the substance will dissolve.

The motion of the solute/solvent and solution formation

By stirring a mixture with a solvent and a solute you are speeding up the process of dissolving the solute in the solvent. This is accomplished by continually keeping solvent in contact with the surface of the solute. The rate of stirring affects the rate at which the solute dissolves. It does not affect the amount it can dissolve.

The temperature and solution formation

As you can probably guess the temperature also affects the rate at which the solute dissolves. The solute will dissolve much faster in a hot solvent than it will in a cold one. For example, at high temperature, the kinetic energy of the water molecules would be greater than at the lower temperatures. Therefore they move faster.

The particle size and solution formation

If a solute is going to dissolve it not only depends on the previous two topics but also the size of the solute's particles. For example, if you were to put a cube of sugar into a glass of water it would dissolve slower than an equal mass of granulated sugar, because the granulated sugar has a larger total surface area than one large cube of sugar.

Types of solutions

A solution is a mixture of many minerals.[2] There are many types of solutions, they come in many different kinds like a solid, liquid, or a gas.[3] Some common ones are Alloys, which are solid solutions that has two or more elements. Colloids, which are a type of mechanical mixture, also use two or more immiscible substances. A saturated solution, which contains a maximum amount of solute for a given quantity of solvent at a constant temperature and pressure. And last but not least an unsaturated solution, which is a solution that contains less solute then a saturated solution at a given temperature and pressure.(Wilbraham p.473)

Properties of solutions

A solution is a fluid that is usually a mixture of materials. A fluid is like a liquid or maybe even a gas, it flows. A fluid like a solution is a solvent. if it is not a solvent it is called a solute.[4] A solute is a substance that dissolves to form a solution.[5]

Solutions have many properties but below you will find a few of the most common.

  • 1.) Partials of solute can be the size of individually small molecules or ions. The maximum diameter for a solute partial is about one nanometer.
  • 2.) The mixture will not separate when left standing.
  • 3.) The mixture won't separate when a common fiber filter is present.
  • 4.) The solution is of an ionic material in to water will
  • 5.) If the solution shows an increased boiling point as the amount of solute is increased.
  • 6.) If a solution of a solid non-volatile solute in a liquid shows decrees in its vapor pressure. [6]


Water, the universal solvent

Water is called the universal solvent. A solvent is a substance that dissolves a solute.[7] This forms a solution such as sugar dissolving in water. In chemistry they have identified/classified solvents into three categories according to their polarity (positive or negative state).[8] They are polar protic, dipolar aprotic, and non-polar. Polar protic solvents are compounds that can be represented by general formulas. Polar protic solvents have the polarity stems that bond dipole of the O-H bond.[9] Dipole meaning a molecule that has two charges or poles.[10] There is a difference in electronegativity of the hydrogen and oxygen atoms. Dipole aprotic solvents have special solvents that all contain a bond that has a large bond dipole. this bond is usually a multiple bond between carbon and nitrogen or oxygen. The last of the three is Non-Polar solvents. These are compounds that contain low dielectric constants, a measure of the relative permittivity of a dielectric material [11], and are not usually miscible with water.[12] Solvents are very damaging chemicals for two reasons and the first is that they are used in massive amounts. The second reason is they are usually volatile liquids that are very hard to contain.[13]

Even though any liquid can be used as a solvent, many solvents are very damaging chemicals for two reasons. Those reasons are: first that they are used in very large amounts and the second is that they are usually volatile liquids.[14] A volatile liquid is a liquid with a low boiling point and/or a high vapor pressure.[15] In most solutions you will find that chemical reactions take place. [16]

Some other common solvents are Acetic Acid, Benzene, Nitro-benzene, Phenol, Cyclohexanol, and Camphor. You can find benzene in after-shave lotion because of its pleasant smell. Phenol are a class of chemical compounds. These are things you can find all around.

Supersaturated solution

A supersaturated solution is something that contains more solute then it can theoretically hold at a given temperature.


  • [17] Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  • Wilbraham, Antony C., Dennis D. Staley, Michael S. Matta, and Edward L. Waterman. Chemistry. Boston: Pearson Education Inc., 2008.
  • [18]
  • [19]Dorin, Henry. Chemistry The Study of Matter. Massachusetts Cebco,


  • [20]Copyright © 1997-2005 Chemtutor, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • [21]
  • [22]Copyright © 2008, Lexico Publishing Group, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • [23]Copyright © 2008, Lexico Publishing Group, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • [24]Solvents
  • [25]Copyright © 2008, Lexico Publishing Group, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • [26] Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia