Osmosis in Plant Cells

Osmosis in Plant Cells

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Osmosis in Plant Cells

Osmosis the diffusion of water molecules, during osmosis molecules
move from a low sugar/salt concentration to a high sugar/salt
concentration through a semi-permeable membrane. In this experiment, I
am examining osmosis in plant cells. I am using potato chips because
potatoes contain catalysts. My experiment involves soaking potato
chips in different strengths of glucose solution to see if the mass of
the potato chip changes. I predict that the mass will change according
to the strength of the solution, as the strength of the solution
increases the potatoes mass will decrease. This is because of osmosis,
each plant cell contains a vacuole, and this filled with cell sap,
which has its own solution strength. If the glucose solution I am
soaking it in has a lower solution that the cell sap I will expect the
potato chip to swell and increase in mass, if it has a higher solution
then the potato chip should shrink. If the solution is the same
strength as the potato piece then it is likely there will be no
difference in mass.

To carry out this experiment I will need:

Ÿ A potato

Ÿ A knife: To cut the potato.

Ÿ A ruler: To make sure all the potato pieces are the cut same length.

Ÿ Different strengths of sugar solution, ranging from 0.2m to 1m.

Ÿ Beakers: to keep the sugar solution in,

Ÿ Filter paper: to blot the potato pieces on.

Ÿ Scales: to weigh the initial and final mass of the potatoes.

Ÿ 100ml measuring cylinder.

I need to clean up any spillages and be careful with glassware
(breakages) as safety precautions. I also should be careful when using
the knife to cut the potatoes.

Method:

Ÿ Cut five pieces of potato, each 5cm long.

Ÿ Weigh each piece and record the results.

Ÿ Put a one potato chip in each beaker, containing the sugar solution.

Ÿ Soak for one hour and 30 minutes.

Ÿ Take out the potato pieces and blot them on the filter paper to

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remove any excess water.

Ÿ Weigh each potato chip again and record the results.

Ÿ Repeat

I want to make my results as accurate as possible and to do this I
need to make sure this is a fair experiment. The only thing I will be
changing is the strength of the sugar solution, going from 0.0m to 1m.
To make sure I get accurate results I cannot change the length of the
potato, or the amount of time it spends in the solution, this might
have an effect on the osmosis and produce anomalous results. I should
also measure the solutions properly (50ml)

These are my results for reading one:

Concentration of glucose solution

(m)

Initial mass (g)

Final mass (g)

Mass difference

(g)

Percentage mass change

%

Time left in the solution

Length of the potatoes

0.0

5

6.42

1.42

28.40

1hr 30m

5cm

0.2

5

4.99

- 0.01

-0.20

1hr 30m

5cm

0.4

5

3.92

- 10.8

-21.60

1hr 30m

5cm

0.6

5

3.82

-1.18

-23.60

1hr 30m

5cm

0.8

5

3.61

-1.39

-27.80

1hr 30m

5cm

1.0

5

3.38

-1.62

-32.40

1hr 30m

5cm

Reading two:

Concentration of glucose solution

(m)

Initial mass (g)

Final mass (g)

Mass Difference

(g)

Percentage Change

%

Time left in the solution

Length of the potatoes

0.0

5

6.20

1.20

24.00

1hr 30m

5cm

0.2

5

5.11

0.11

2.30

1hr 30m

5cm

0.4

5

3.98

-1.02

-20.40

1hr 30m

5cm

0.6

5

3.47

-1.53

-30.60

1hr 30m

5cm

0.8

5

3.43

-1.57

-31.40

1hr 30m

5cm

1.0

5

3.21

-1.79

-35.80

1hr 30m

5cm

% Percentage change in mass = initial mass/final mass x 100

Average percentage change in mass:

Concentration of glucose solution

Percentage Change

Reading 1

Percentage change

Reading 2

Average Percentage Change

0.0m

28.40

24.00

26.20

0.2m

-0.20

2.20

1.00

0.4m

-21.60

-20.40

-21.00

0.6m

-23.60

-30.40

-27.10

0.8m

-27.80

-31.40

-29.60

1m

-32.40

-35.80

-34.10

Average = reading 1 + reading 2 / 2

From looking at my results I can see that in the pure water and 0.2m
solution the mass of the potato chips increased and when placed in the
stronger solutions 0.4m and above the mass decreased. I can tell from
this that the potatoes cell sap solution is stronger than pure water
and 0.2m because the potatoes are increasing in mass, so they have
drawn in the water molecules from the weaker solutions due to osmosis.
The potatoes soaked in the solutions 0.4m and above the potatoes,
chips’ mass has decreased.

My results support my prediction, and prove that, as the molar
increases the potato mass will decrease. My graph supports my
predictions too.

I think this experiment was suitable for investigating osmosis, I got
all the information I needed after taking only two readings. I believe
the results to be accurate, looking at the graph I can only see one
anomalous result, although this does not fit in with my curve of best
fit it is only out very slightly. I am not sure what is the cause of
this anomalous result, but there could be several reasons, it could
have been measured or weighed incorrectly or all the excess water cold
not of been blotted off etc.

I think my method is accurate and reliable as I took two readings that
both supported my predictions except for only anomalous result and
both readings were similar and so were the averages. Looking at this I
think my method is reliable if it is repeated accurately.

My results were accurate enough to draw up a conclusion that supported
my predictions that I made before carrying out the experiment.

If I was, given the chance to repeat this experiment I think I could
improve it by making sure the potato chips were weighed correctly and
I think by soaking the potato chips for longer I would have gathered
more accurate results. I would also measure the volume of the sugar
solution more accurately because having too much or too little could
have affected the osmosis.
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