It's easy to make a saturated solution for chemistry lab or growing crystals. Here's a look at what a saturated solution is and how to prepare one.
What Is a Saturated Solution?
A saturated solution is one containing as much solute-the solid being dissolved in the liquid-as possible without forming a precipitate, or leftover solid. This is the maximum concentration of solute.
How to Make a Saturated Solution
Here are three ways to make a saturated solution:
- Add solute to a liquid until no more will dissolve. Solubility often increases with temperature, so you may be able to get more solute into a hot solvent than you would if the solvent was cool. For example, you can dissolve much more sugar in hot water than you can in cold water.
- Evaporate solvent from an unsaturated solution. You can evaporate the solvent by permitting air circulation or by heating the solvent.
- Add a seed crystal to a supersaturated solution. The seed crystal will cause the solute to precipitate, leaving a saturated solution.