Freezing Point Depression Limitations & Economics

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The freezing point depression has some limitations and factors which affect to what extent the freezing point of the solvent will be decreased. One major limitation is the choice of the solute to be dissolved in the solvent because the solute must be able to dissolve sufficiently to lower the freezing point of the solvent. The solute must be soluble in the solvent in order to form a homogenous mixture. A few experiments with the unknown and different solutes will tell you what kind of properties the substance has and what substances will dissolve in it. Also, there is a limit of how much solute you can put in the solvent and you should not exceed that certain percentage. If you put too much solute and end up having more solute than the water, the freezing point will start going back up again because the solute won’t be able to dissolve within the solvent at such a big quantity. Another limitation is that the concentration of the solvent in the mixture should be at least 10% and if it’s lower, the freezing point depression might not be affected because the amount of solute used will be too low. Lastly, the solution must be cooled to a lower temperature than the pure solvent in order to freeze. If water was used as the solvent, it has a freezing point of 0 °C and the solution will freeze at even a lower temperature so you have to put it somewhere cool like a freezer. The freezing point depression concept can be used economically to make lots of money from applications such as antifreeze. Antifreeze is a liquid mixture composed of ethylene glycol and water and it’s vital for a car’s engine because it explains why car fuel doesn’t freeze in the winter and how combustion engines operate at freezing temperatures. The technology we depend in our daily lives like cars wouldn’t be able to function in the winter when it is too cold or even in the summer when it is too warm

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