# Osmosis - Potato Chip

1. Feb 24, 2005

### Turkish

Hi.. Im currently doing an experiment on Osmosis - Potato Chip, Looking at the effect of osmosis etc, However I was curious whether there was an inner depth to this, So far were ever I look the only defination of Osmosis is higher concentration to lower, but within my prediction I would like to put an answer of reason of choice with more depth, Could someone possibly explain thanks

2. Feb 24, 2005

### Monique

Staff Emeritus
You'd have to understand that systems go into equilibrium. In a simple system that would mean that concentrations of ions in a system are the same everywhere. But there can be other forces that prevent this, for instance a cell wall that prevents a cell from sucking up any more water due to osmosis.. also this system will reach an equilibrium, but the concentrations of ions won't be the same.

3. Feb 24, 2005

### Monique

Staff Emeritus
Also interesting is to look into entropy: the measure of chaos in a system. It is unlikely that a lot of the same molecules are in the same place at the same time: this requires lowering the entropy and thus requires energy to be put in.

4. Feb 26, 2005

### Ola

Use the term "Turgidity" to be more scientific.
For instance, if you place an animal cell in a hypotonic solution, low in concentration, water will move from high water potential to low water potential. Eventually, the cell will burst because of excess water movement. This doesn't happen to plant cells because of the presence of cell wall. Water will go into the cell up to a certain limit, the cell becomes turgid. Due to the stretching of the cell wall a pressure potential is developed which offsets the solute potential of the cell solution and further net uptake of water stops. Hence, the plant cell is protected.

In osmosis, you need to be familiar with terms like pressure potential, solute potential and water potential. You need to nkow how animal/plant cells behave in different solutions and workout water potential of cells using the equation:

water potential = solute potential + pressure potential