Pros And Cons Of Reverse Osmosis

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Thorough research on this task was used by investigating 14 different sites. These ranged between obtaining definitions for hypotonic, hypertonic and istonic; researching osmosis in food processes, finding out more about chemiosmosis, the pros and cons / advantages and disadvantages of reverse osmosis, it’s application and process. The idea behind the research was to prepare adequately before doing the experiment and also to help understand the results and outcomes of the experiment and the techniques used.
During this experiment I investigated the effect of various salt concentration on the rate of osmosis in potatoes. I used five beakers with potatoes of the same size in each beaker, each beaker also contained various salt concentrations.
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Reverse osmosis membranes and chemicals have been produced which can be installed as water treatment plants in dairies, farms, wineries, municipalities, mines and even power stations.
• Reverse osmosis water treatment can also be used to desalinate (remove the salt) from water which provides a fundamental water sources for some of the world’ major cities.
• These processes help companies to be able to recover and reuse both water and raw materials from process streams thereby protecting the environment from damage.
• The process of reverse osmosis also helps industrial clients to save money because they are effectively recycling processed water and limiting their production and dumping of waste and waste by-products.
• For places where water is very scarce, salt water can be converted into water that we can drink.
• Osmosis is used in food processing. Water that has been rid of chemicals used to clean the water is purified by using osmosis. By doing this your food is prepared with clean and pure water, not the municipal water. (4,6)
Problems before my investigation, before the start of the
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The solution with the most salt lost the most water in the shortest period of time. The potato in distilled water absorbed water and therefore the mass of the potato increased. My hypothesis was therefore incorrect.
Possible shortcomings of this investigation Having seen the results from this experiment if it were to be done again I would increase the amount of salt in each cup but keep the same mass of potato samples to obtain a faster, more dramatic and clearer result. Another option would be to rather place the experiment in direct sunlight as opposed to indirect sunlight as the heat from direct sunlight would speed up the reaction process. Replacing the water used with boiled water would also play a part in speeding up the process of osmosis and subsequently the results obtained.
Implications of results of this investigation
In the event of there being a severe drought the only water resource available would be seawater. Using seawater to irrigate crops would detrimentally affect the environment. The reason for this is because the salt water removes the existing moisture from the soil and the nutrients from the crops, the salt would then dry and in effect burn the crops in combination with the direct heat of the sun. Therefore we could use reverse osmosis to remove the salt from the seawater to provide normal `water to irrigate crops
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