agz2001
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Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2020 12:44 pm
Occupation: Parent

Crystallization, Geodes, Super Saturated Formulas!

Postby agz2001 » Tue Sep 22, 2020 12:57 pm

Hi -
We are working on a 5th grade science fair project of growing crystals in egg shells. Our one variable that will change is the substance we are using - either Borax, salt/vinegar, or Alum powder. We have our question, materials, and hypothesis. Now we just need some expert information to round out the project before we get started! I hope someone out there (much smarter than me) can help! Thank you!!


1. Why is crystallization an important process for a scientist to understand?

2. How are super saturated solutions used in scientific processes?

3. If the solution to grow crystals is not super saturated, why doesn't it work?

ctactawong
Expert
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Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2020 7:56 am
Occupation: Other Adult

Re: Crystallization, Geodes, Super Saturated Formulas!

Postby ctactawong » Thu Sep 24, 2020 7:50 am

Hello,

I can provide some information for you to get started.

1. Why is crystallization an important process for a scientist to understand?
2. How are super saturated solutions used in scientific processes?

Scientists study it as a natural process.
There are important applications in pharmaceutical and food industry. (what are the specific examples?)

3. If the solution to grow crystals is not super saturated, why doesn't it work?

It is important to understand the growth process known as "nucleation and growth". The theory suggests turning solution to crystals is energetically favorable (i.e. would happen on its own) only if the seeds (i.e. very tiny crystals) exceeds a certain size. There are two ways to get the seeds -- spontaneous aggregation from solution molecules or granules in solution. Super saturation favors both mechanisms. (why?) Super saturation also favors the growth process compared to a diluted solution (why?)


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