Question on Hydrated Molecules

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In summary, the student did a lab and does not understand what happened. There was a change in color, gas was formed, and it is unknown if it was a chemical or physical change.
  • #1
!Live_4Ever!
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Hey, I am a gr11 student and I just did a lab, and I do NOT understand a thing.

Ok, so I have hydrated Copper (II) sulfate, and basically I heated it up in a test tube in order to make it an anhydrous copper (II) sulfate compound

My question is:

-Is this a chemical or physical change?


I am seriously lost here, since the ionic compound (Copper II Sulfate) didnt change, and just the water, so I thought it was a physical change. It could also be reverted easily to the original hydrated compound, by just adding a few drops of water. On the other hand, gas was formed, and there was a change in color... so... I am really lost..yeah.. lol
 
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  • #2
You are on the best track to understand that classifying all changes as either chemical or physical is a crap :wink:
 
  • #3
i'm with borek. its very annoying to classify some things especially when it could be both.

on one hand, it could be a chemical change since each unit of CuSO4.xH2O is losing its water and becoming just CuSO4, and you release water vapor in the reaction.

on the other hand, hydrated salts aren't really different from regular salts, since the water isn't actually a part of the core molecule. It's just a regular salt molecule with a water molecule "stuck" to it that just sort of tags along. Heating unsticks the water molecule and removes it as a gas particle. I think the evidence here is stronger for a physical change. IMHO at least.
 
  • #4
plus, correct me if I am wrong experts, but i don't think there is much of a reactivity difference with anhydrous and hydrated salts, except in cases where the water can interfere to give different products. I think there's just a difference in the reaction times? This is even more ammo for physical change rather than chemical change.
 
  • #5
Thanks, your input was really helpful =)

I handed in my lab and I'm trying not to think about it. :rofl:
 

1. What is a hydrated molecule?

A hydrated molecule is a molecule that has water molecules attached to it. This can occur through physical absorption or chemical bonding.

2. What is the importance of hydrated molecules?

Hydrated molecules play a crucial role in many biological and chemical processes. They can affect the physical properties, solubility, and reactivity of molecules, making them essential for life and many industrial applications.

3. How are hydrate molecules formed?

Hydrated molecules are formed when water molecules interact with other molecules, either through hydrogen bonding or dipole-dipole interactions. This can occur through physical absorption or chemical reactions.

4. How can we determine the hydration state of a molecule?

The hydration state of a molecule can be determined through various analytical techniques such as nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), infrared spectroscopy, and X-ray crystallography. These methods can provide information on the number and location of water molecules attached to a molecule.

5. Can hydrated molecules be dehydrated?

Yes, hydrated molecules can be dehydrated through physical means such as heating or evaporation, or through chemical reactions that break the bonds between water molecules and the molecule they are attached to. This can change the properties and behavior of the molecule.

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