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Separation of Mixtures

A material system which is made up by two or more different substances which are mixed together but are not chemically combined is called a mixture. Mixture is defined as the physical combination of two or more substances of which identities are retained. Separation of mixtures is a process which is used to transform a mixture of substances into distinct products.

Mixtures are the resultant product of a mechanical blending of chemical substances like elements and compounds, without formation of any chemical bonding or other chemical change to the individual components, so that each constituent substance can retain its original chemical makeup. Even though there is no chemical changes to the mixture there is observed alternation in some physical characteristics such as melting point and boiling point. The separated products may be different in chemical properties or some physical property, like size, crystal modification etc.

In chemistry a mixture is a material system which is made up of two or more different substances which are (mixed) together but are does not have any chemical reactions. The term mixture is used in reference to the physical combination of two or more substances without destroying their respective identities.


Homogenous Mixture

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The properties present in homogeneous mixtures are that they are in single-phase system, display uniform appearance and there is uniformity in properties and composition throughout the sample. Each region of a sample shares high level of identity to all other regions of the sample. Some of the examples of homogenous mixture are salt water and rubbing alcohol as they are single-phase system.

Homogeneous mixture definition

"A substance in which two or more components are evenly mixed but not bonded together."

The first mixture is a solution of solid salt dissolved in liquid water and the second mixture is a combination of water and isopropyl alcohol. For a naked eye a sample of milk will appear to be a homogenous mixture but microscopic observation displays its heterogenic nature as it is a mixture of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals in water.

Heterogeneous Mixture

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Mixtures can generally classify into homogeneous and heterogeneous. Heterogeneous mixtures consist of more than one phase or of different parts and physical separation can be possible of the individual phases. The different components in heterogeneous mixtures can be visibly distinguished from each other.

 Some common examples of heterogeneous mixtures are

  1. A quartz piece containing a vein of gold
  2. Granite
  3. A tossed salad and many more

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