What is a homogeneous mixture?

We explain what homogeneous mixtures are and what other type of mixture exists. Examples of homogeneous mixtures.

  1. What is a homogeneous mixture?

A homogeneous mixture is a union of two or more substances that form a joint material , in which the two original elements are indifferentiable, even if they are not chemically bound. Said more easily: the elements that make up the homogeneous mixture cannot be differentiated with the naked eye, but they are physically separable, since there is no chemical reaction between them.

The mixtures are materials of very common use in the routine of humanity, in aspects as diverse as the kitchen, construction and a gigantic and so on. To achieve one, it is enough to mechanically join two or more different substances, until they form a joint matter: the ingredients are joined but retain their chemical properties and, generally, can be separated again, through procedures such as sieving, filtration , magnetic separation , decantation or centrifugation , among others.

A mixture can consist of elements in both a liquid , solid or gaseous state , and usually form alloys (when metals are involved ), solutions (when the predominant ingredient is liquid), suspensions (when a mixed solid is found in a liquid or gas) or colloids (very fine solids in a liquid phase).

Due to the reasons explained above, the mixtures do not form new compounds , but constitute a joint of their ingredients.

  1. Types of homogeneous mixture

The mixtures can be of two types:

  • Homogeneous . Those in which you cannot differentiate with the naked eye each of the ingredients involved in the mixture. They are also known as solutions .
  • Heterogeneous . Those, on the contrary, in which the constituent ingredients can be seen with the naked eye, since they are usually unevenly distributed. Depending on the size of the substances, they may be thick mixtures (the particles are of appreciable size) or suspensions (the particles are small in size).
  1. Examples of homogeneous mixtures

In our daily life, homogeneous mixtures abound. Some examples are:

  • The air . The mass of gases that we know as air , attracted to the earth’s surface by gravity , is composed of various gases: nitrogen, argon, oxygen and carbon dioxide , among others, but we cannot distinguish them with the naked eye.
  • Coffee with sugar . When dissolving a spoonful of sugar in coffee, we cease to appreciate the white color of this ingredient, although we can feel its taste when taking a sip. However, it has not ceased to be what it is: a mixture of sugar and coffee.
  • Salted water . The sea water is full of salts and other components dissolved in its immensity, and although we can feel the salty on the lips or skin after taking a bath, and we can even recover the salt if we let dry some seawater, no We can distinguish one from the other with the naked eye.
  • Chocolate milk . This typical childhood drink consists of the homogeneous mixture of a glass of milk and a handful of chocolate powder. The result is chocolate milk, inseparable to the naked eye.
  • Steel . The formation of steel involves an iron alloy, its base metal, with other metallic or non-metallic components such as carbon, nickel or copper, depending on the type of steel sought. The result is a joint metal in which the members cannot be distinguished, and that combines their physical properties. The same occurs with other metal alloys such as bronze or white gold.
  • Water and alcohol . The preparation of many drinks or cocktails involves mixing water and some distilled alcohol, obtaining a homogeneous liquid mixture in which you can not see how much of each thing is at a glance. If you try it, however, you can feel the taste of both, and depending on the concentration of alcohol, we will have a more or less strong drink.

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