Physical & Theoretical Chemistry - Properties of Solutions | Chemistry Net

Physical & Theoretical Chemistry - Properties of Solutions

Properties of Solutions



Solutions are homogeneous mixtures. Many chemical reactions are carried out in solutions and solutions are closely related to our every day lives. The air we breathe, the liquids we drink and blood and the fluids in our body are all solutions. The components of a solution are:

  • The solvent - the major component of a solution
  • The solute - the minor component of a solution

Solutions especially liquid solutions, usually have different properties than either the pure solvent or the solute. For example, pure water freezes at 0 C, but aqueous solutions freeze at lower temperatures. Some of these properties depend only on the number of dissolved particles and not their identity. Such properties are called colligative properties.

The major colligative properties are the following:

  • freezing-point lowering
  • boiling point raising
  • vapor-pressure lowering
  • osmotic pressure


  1. P. Atkins, J de Paula,  “Physical Chemistry: Thermodynamics, Structure and Change”, 10th Edition, W. H. Freeman, 2014
  2. D. A. McQuarrie, J. D. Simon,“Physical Chemistry: A Molecular Approach”, 1st Edition, University Science Books, 1997
  3. K. J. Laidler, J.H. Meiser, B.C. Sanctuary, “Physical Chemistry”, 4th Edition, Brooks Cole, 2002

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