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Conductivity of Solutions: The Effect of Concentration

Figure from experiment 14 from Chemistry with Vernier


If an ionic compound is dissolved in water, it dissociates into ions and the resulting solution will conduct electricity. Dissolving solid sodium chloride in water releases ions according to the equation:

{\text{NaCl(s)}} \to {\text{N}}{{\text{a}}^{\text{+ }}}{\text{(aq)  +  C}}{{\text{l}}^{\text{- }}}{\text{(aq)}}

In this experiment, you will study the effect of increasing the concentration of an ionic compound on conductivity. Conductivity will be measured as concentration of the solution is gradually increased by the addition of concentrated NaCl drops. The same procedure will be used to investigate the effect of adding solutions with the same concentration (1.0 M), but different numbers of ions in their formulas: aluminum chloride, AlCl3, and calcium chloride, CaCl2. A Conductivity Probe will be used to measure conductivity of the solution. Conductivity is measured in microsiemens per centimeter (μS/cm).


In this experiment, you will

  • Use a Conductivity Probe to measure the conductivity of solutions.
  • Investigate the relationship between the conductivity and concentration of a solution.
  • Investigate the conductivity of solutions resulting from compounds that dissociate to produce different number of ions.

Sensors and Equipment

This experiment features the following Vernier sensors and equipment.

Option 1

Option 2

Additional Requirements

You may also need an interface and software for data collection. What do I need for data collection?

Standards Correlations

See all standards correlations for Chemistry with Vernier »

Chemistry with Vernier

See other experiments from the lab book.

1Endothermic and Exothermic Reactions
2Freezing and Melting of Water
3Another Look at Freezing Temperature
4Heat of Fusion of Ice
5Find the Relationship: An Exercise in Graphing Analysis
6Boyle's Law: Pressure-Volume Relationship in Gases
7Pressure-Temperature Relationship in Gases
8Fractional Distillation
9Evaporation and Intermolecular Attractions
10Vapor Pressure of Liquids
11Determining the Concentration of a Solution: Beer's Law
12Effect of Temperature on Solubility of a Salt
13Properties of Solutions: Electrolytes and Non-Electrolytes
14Conductivity of Solutions: The Effect of Concentration
15Using Freezing Point Depression to Find Molecular Weight
16Energy Content of Foods
17Energy Content of Fuels
18Additivity of Heats of Reaction: Hess's Law
19Heat of Combustion: Magnesium
20Chemical Equilibrium: Finding a Constant, Kc
21Household Acids and Bases
22Acid Rain
23Titration Curves of Strong and Weak Acids and Bases
24Acid-Base Titration
25Titration of a Diprotic Acid: Identifying an Unknown
26Using Conductivity to Find an Equivalence Point
27Acid Dissociation Constant, Ka
28Establishing a Table of Reduction Potentials: Micro-Voltaic Cells
29Lead Storage Batteries
30Rate Law Determination of the Crystal Violet Reaction
31Time-Release Vitamin C Tablets
32The Buffer in Lemonade
33Determining the Free Chlorine Content of Swimming Pool Water
34Determining the Quantity of Iron in a Vitamin Tablet
35Determining the Phosphoric Acid Content in Soft Drinks
36Microscale Acid-Base Titration

Experiment 14 from Chemistry with Vernier Lab Book

<em>Chemistry with Vernier</em> book cover

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