What is a mixture and what is a solution?
Most things we see, eat and even drink are mixtures of some sort. That yummy fresh salad you have at dinner is a mixture of different vegetables. When things are mixed there are no chemical reactions, the substances are still the same and do not change their chemical structure. This means that mixtures can be separated. They are reversible. Think about that salad, if you don’t like the tomatoes you can easily take them out, you can separate them. This is because the tomato hasn’t stopped being a tomato, its chemistry is exactly the same.
Let’s have a look at the difference between a mixture and a solution:
A mixture is when two or more substances are put together. Each part of the mixture still has its own physical properties. Mixtures can be homogenous or heterogeneous.
Homogenous mixtures are when substances are distributed evenly like salt in water.
Heterogeneous mixtures are not distributed evenly like sand in water. The sand doesn’t spread through all the water in the same proportion, it settles more at the bottom.
Even salt water can be reversed. To separate the salt from the water you have to evaporate the water. To separate sand from water, you just filter the water.
Solutions are homogeneous mixtures like salt in water or sugar in tea. They are evenly mixed.
Solutions do not always have to be solids dissolved in liquids. Gas can be dissolved in liquid (making fizzy drinks), gas can be dissolved in gas (making the air we breathe), liquid can be dissolved in liquid, and even solids can be dissolved in solids.