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Why Oil and Water do not mix?

There is a perfectly good explanation for why oil and water do not mix. It all comes down to chemistry. Let us now explore...

Everyday Chemistry - Why Oil and Water do not mix?

Every noticed that if you apply oil on your hand and wash it under water, the water doesn't stick to your hand? Or how when a drop of oil falls in a glass of water, it floats on the surface instead of mixing? There is a perfectly good explanation for this. It all comes down to chemistry!

All About Polarity...

Water is a polar molecule and this is a key reason why water and oil do not mix. Wondering what polarity is? Polarity is when one end is positively charged while the other end is negatively charged. Each water molecule is made of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. But the atoms are not arranged in a line. The two hydrogen atoms cling to one side of the oxygen atom making the molecule look something like a Mickey Mouse head. The electrons in the molecule spend more time on the oxygen side of the molecule, giving this side a negative charge and the hydrogen side a positive charge. Only other polar molecules can dissolve in water because polar molecules dissolve only in polar solvents and non-polar molecules dissolve only in non-polar solvents.

Oil and water don't mix because oil is made up of non-polar molecules while water molecules are polar in nature. Because water molecules are electrically charged, they get attracted to other water molecules and exclude the oil molecules. This eventually causes the oil molecules, or lipids, to clump together.

But all is well that ends well

With the advanced technologies, we have detergents and soaps that help in cleaning the grime and oil from both our body and utensils. So do not worry, let chemistry play its parts while we will play ours!

Tags :     Oil     Water     Polarity     Mix     Charged     Molecules    


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