You are on page 1of 36

Expression of concentration

By Prof. Dr/ Iman El-shabrawy

At the end of this lecture you should be able to:1- Describe various expressions of concentrations used. 2- Explain dilution, concentrated, saturated and supersaturated solution. 3- Explain biological solution concentration i.e hypertonic, hypotonic and isotonic. 4- Differentiate molarity, molality & normality of solutions. 5- List units of concentration used in medicine (g%, m.mol, mg/dl, etc.)


Concentration of a solution represents amount of solute dissolved in a given amount of solvent or solution. Amount of solute Amount of solution

Concentration =

Ways of expressing concentration

1-Quantitatively Dilute solution : a solution that

contains a small proportion of solute relative to solvent. Concentrated solution : a solution that contains a large proportion of solute relative to solvent.
To concentrate a solution, one must add more solute, or reduce amount of solvent (e.g., by evaporation).


By contrast, to dilute a solution, one must add more solvent, or reduce amount of solute.

These glasses containing red dye demonstrate quantitative changes in concentration.


Unsaturated solution : a solution in which more solute will dissolve. Saturated solution : a solution in which no more solute will dissolve.
If additional solute is added to a saturated solution, it will not dissolve (supersaturation occur). So, a solution containing more solute over saturated solutions is called supersaturated.


Biological solution concentration

Hypertonic, isotonic & hypotonic Solutions Words hypertonic, isotonic and hypotonic describe water conc. of 2 solutions separated by a selectively permeable membrane such as cell membrane. Hypertonic = solution with lower water conc. (higher solute concentration) Hypotonic = solution with higher water conc. (lower solute concentration) Isotonic = 2 solutions with same water conc. (equal in their solute concentrations)

Solute will move from hypertonic solution into hypotonic solution.

3- Qualitatively
Many ways, it is sometimes preferred to measure volume rather than mass of a solution. Some qualitative expressions for conc. are temperature-dependent (i.e,conc of solution changes as temp. changes), whereas others are not. Important for experiments in which temperature does not remain constant.

Qualitative expression of concentration

Concentration expression
Percent composition (by mass)

Measurements required mass of solute & mass of solution

Temperature dependence No (mass does not

change with temp.)

Percent composition (by volume)

volume of solute & volume of solution mass of solute & volume of solution

(volume changes with temp.)


percent composition ( mass/volume)

(volume changes with temp.)



Concentration expression

Measurements required
moles of solute &volume of solution Moles of solute & mass of solvent moles of solute &moles of solvent

Temperature dependence
(volume changes with temp.) (neither mass nor moles changes with temp.)




mole fraction

(moles do not change with temp.)


Mole (from molecule), with symbol = mol is used to measure amount of a substance.

1 mole is amount of a substance which contains as many elementary units as there are atoms in 0.012 Kg (12 gram). of C12 (Avogadro constant). This measure tells us number of reacting particles.

Molarity (M) , of a solution is calculated by Molarity = moles / litre

taking moles of solute & dividing by liters of solution, hence

In other words Therefore

Molar solution
Is a solution, which contains the molecular weight of solute in grams dissolved in one liter of the solution. Usually concentration is expressed as a fraction of mole e.g.:Millimole (m M) = 1/1000 mole Micromole ( M) = 1/1000,000 mole Nanomole (nM) = 1/1000,ooo,ooo


Measurement in moles is a measurement of amount of a substance. Measurement in molarity is a measurement of concentration of a substance [amount (moles) / unit volume (liters)].

Dilution of stock solutions

Dilution of stock solutions is frequently used to make solutions of any desired molarity.

What does it mean to dilute a solution?

Means to add more solvent without adding more solute. The fact that solute amount stays constant allows calculations to be made:


moles before dilution = moles after dilution (X)

From definition of molarity (above):

moles of solute = molarity * volume

So we can substitute MV (molarity * volume) into equation (X) above: Molarity 1 * Volume 1 = Molarity 2 * Volume 2

In short, M1V1 = M2V2 1 refers to the situation before dilution and 2 refers to it after dilution.

Example 1 : You have 60 ml of a 1.5 M solution of NaCl, but 0.6 M solution is needed. How many ml of 0.6 M can you make? We know that, M1V1 = M2V2 1.5 M * 60 ml = 0.6 M * (V 2) V2= 150 ml

Mole Fraction (X):

that component to total no of moles of all components in solution. To calculate mole fraction, we need to know: Number of moles of each component present in the solution. if we need to know, mole fraction of A[X A] in a solution consisting of A, B, C, ... is calculated using the equation

X, of a component is ratio of no.of moles of


To calculate mole fraction of B, X B, then

The molality (m)

Molality (m) , molality (m) molality (m) (yes this is the right spelling) . Concentration measured as moles of solute /kilogram of solvent (molality = moles / kilogram).

Molalities are preferred in experiments that involve temperature changes e.g. calorimetry & freezing point depression.



A 1 m (not 1 M) NaCl solution contains 1 mole of NaCl /kilogram of water.

Normality (N)
Is number of equivalents of solute/ liter of solution. Equivalent weight equals molecular weight in grams divided by valence. Normal solution is a solution which contains equivalent weight of solute in grams dissolved in 1 liter of solution.


For example, hydrogen has atomic weight 1.008 & valence 1, has an equivalent weight of 1.008. Oxygen has an atomic weight of 15.9994 & a valence of 2, so it has an equivalent weight of 7.9997. Elements may assume different equivalent weights in different compounds. For example, iron (atomic weight 55.845) assumes equivalent weight 27.9225 ,if it is valence is 2 in the compound (ferrous Fe+2); or 18.615 if it is valence 3 (ferric fe+3).

N.B: - Weight of a molecule is the sum of weights of atoms of which it is made. - Unit of weight is dalton (da) which equals 1/12 of weight of an atom of C12. - Thus (MW) of water is 18 daltons & glucose is 180 daltons. - Mole is quantity of a substance whose weight in grams is equal to MW of substance. - Thus 1 mole of glucose weight 180 g. - Furthermore , if you dissolve 1 mole of a substance in 1 liter (L) of water to make a solution , you have made a 1 molar (1M) solution.


Molarity M= number of moles (mol.w) of solution/L of solution. - Normality N= number of equivalents of solution/ L of solution. - Molality m= number of moles of solute/1000 g of solvent.

Parts / million ( p p m)
A unit of conc. often used when measuring levels of pollutants in air, water, body fluids etc. 1p p m (1 part in 1000,000) is equal to the common unit mg/liter.

Some units of concentration used in medicine milligrams / liter (mg/L), SI unit of conc. Parts / million is an older expression of mg/L, (since 1liter of water under standard conditions weights 1 kilogram or 1 million milligrams). mg/L is often used in medicine & prescriptions. Similarly milligrams / deciliter (mg/dl) ,m.mol & also g% are common medical unit.

Unit/ liter (U/L) Amount of enzyme that hydrolyse 1 m.mol of substrate under optimal conditions.

How to change from m.mol/L into mg/dl:

m. Mol / L X molecular weight 10

How to change from mg/dl into m. mol: m.mol/L=

mg/dl X 10 Molecular weight

Molecular weight= total atomic weight

Questions MCQ Measurement in moles is a measurement of :A- amount (moles) / unit volume (liters). B-number of equivalents of solution/ L of solution. C-number of moles of solute/1000 g of solvent. D- amount of a substance. E- the substance weight in grams equal to its molecular weight. D & E

The molecular weight of glucose is 180 daltons. If you dissolve 180 grams of glucose in water, which of the following is the best description for the result of this process? A. a solution of glucose in water. B. a homogenous mixture. C. a 1 molar solution if water is 1 liter. D. a hypertonic solution. E. a concentrated solution. C

Volume/volume % expression of concentration is not used in temperature dependent experiments.

Volume/volume % is often used when measuring levels of pollutants in air. C

How to prepare 1 molarity solution? No of mol. wt of substance 1 L How to prepare 1 normality solution?

No of equivalent wt.


equivalent wt. =

Mol .wt valence

Question You need 225 ml of 0.8 M NaOH solution and you have a 2.5 M stock solution. How would you make up the solution? 2.5 M * (V1) = 0.8 M * 225 ml V1 = 72 ml Question : using M1V1 = M2V2 relationship, determine the following; 60 ml of a solution are diluted to a volume of 120 ml. The concentration of the diluted solution is 2 M. What was the concentration of the original solution? M1 = (2 * 0.12)/0.06 = 4 M
120ml 60ml