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Is there any way I can differentiate electrical conductivity?

  1. Feb 10, 2007 #1
    ...Kay, so I was doing [or trying to do] my homework, and it's pretty basic, actually.
    We're given a table comprising substances like "vegetable oil", "gatorade", "pencil lead", etc; and asked to predict its electrical conductivity.

    I tried Googling some of it, but nothing really relevant actually came up.

    I get the part that electrolytes are mainly solutions of acids, salts, and bases...but my question is: for substances like vegetable oil, how can you tell its electrical conductivity?

    ...Also, if I have a salt in solid form, will it conduct electricity as well?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 10, 2007 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    It depends on the types of bonds in the material - metal, ionic, covalent. Metals have highly mobile electrons, ionic solids less so, and covalent bonds much less.

    What happens in an electrolyte?

    What types of bonds are found in vegetable oil?
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