Diffusion And Temperature:7 Facts You Should Know


In this article, let us intend to learn about diffusion and temperature and related facts.

In order to transfer the substance in and out of the cell, diffusion is required. Along with contributing to the measurement of hotness as well as coldness of the body, the temperature also decides the amount of kinetic energy possessed by the particles.

The next section depicts the definition of diffusion and temperature.

Diffusion and temperature

A region can be differentiated or characterized by the magnitude of concentration, i.e., a region corresponding to the higher concentration or lower concentration. So, now there will be a movement of molecules through this region, generally starting from higher concentration and reaching the region of lower concentration.

When we intend to measure and express how hot or cold a body is, we use a parameter called temperature. This kind of movement of molecules is performed under a concentration gradient. In all living beings, diffusion is believed to be a prominent phenomenon that is going to occur without fail.

We know that the temperature also represents the specific direction along which we can expect the flow of energy that too spontaneously, basically in the form of heat. The following part deals with the relationship between diffusion and temperature.

diffusion and temperature
Image credits: Pixabay free images

Diffusion and temperature relationship

In order to transfer the substance in and out of the cell, diffusion is required. Along with contributing to the measurement of hotness as well as coldness of the body, the temperature also decides the amount of kinetic energy possessed by the particles. When we increase the temperature, we, in turn, influence them to undergo motion faster.

Every particle does possess an equal probability of moving from higher to lower concentration as there is no force in action during normal diffusion that influences a specific particle to pass into the region of lower concentration.

The upcoming section gives the equation relating to diffusion and temperature.

Diffusion and temperature equation

Fick’s law involves the relationship between the flux of the molecules undergoing diffusion as well as the gradient of diffusion or the force that is driven. When we take the concentration of gradient as the unity, we can observe the diffusion of mass of a substance across a surface of a unit area in a unit interval of time.

Below is given the equation relating diffusion and temperature.

                                                                                       D = D0 exp(-E/KT)

Where, D = the coefficient of diffusion

      D0 =Greatest value of the coefficient of diffusion at infinite temperature

       E= Energy for the activation for coefficient of diffusion

           R = Universal gas constant

           T = Absolute temperature

Can diffusion affect temperature?

Every particle possesses an equal probability of moving from higher to lower concentration as there is no force in action during normal diffusion that influences a specific particle to pass into the region of lower concentration. Thus, the temperature corresponding to the surrounding plays a vital role in influencing the diffusion.

Temperature can be considered as a prime criterion that decides the rate of diffusion as they both are interlinked in terms of the movement of particles. Next, we shall discuss the mutual dependence of diffusion and temperature.

How does temperature affect diffusion?

As we already came across the concept of diffusion being exclusively the consequence of the considerably random motion of the particles but not related to any force in action. Now, we can explicitly relate the random movements to the temperature as it occurs in the proximity of kinetic energy, and kinetic energy is decided through the temperature.

Thus, the particles that are considered to be hotter comparatively are found to move with higher speeds. This is how the temperature conditions take part in affecting the process of diffusion. Diffusion is basically due to the tendency of the particles to move in the context of the concentration difference in the region.

Here, we are going to understand the relationship between the rate of diffusion and temperature.

Rate of diffusion and temperature relationship

The particles tend to possess higher energy because of getting influenced by the higher temperatures provided. Here, molecules with higher energy are believed to transfer at higher speeds, thus favoring the rate of diffusion. Similarly, the energy of the particles is reduced with the help of lower temperatures.

This would be responsible for the reduction in the rate of diffusion. The relation existing between the rate of diffusion and temperature can be depicted by Graham’s diffusion law, which states that the rate of diffusion can be related directly to the square root of temperature. Thus, the law mathematically proves the rate of diffusion and temperature relationship.

Let us now learn about the dependence between the rate of diffusion and temperature.

Why does temperature affect diffusion rate?

We can say that the fluid particles tend to flow or undergo diffusion in a faster manner at considerably high temperatures when compared to that at lower temperatures. This can be observed by conducting a simple experiment of mixing food coloring in water. We can see that the food color undoubtedly diffuses quicker in hot water in comparison with cold water.

Here, the whole game is the vibrations of the molecule that occurs faster in higher temperatures than that in comparatively lower temperatures. This is the reason for the faster diffusion in hot water. Across the semi-permeable membrane, the movement of water molecules is faster when the temperature is considered to be high.

The following section explains the theory underlying the connection between the rate of diffusion and temperature.

diffusion and temperature
Image credits: Pixabay free images

How does temperature affect diffusion rate?

It is proven that the larger amount of kinetic energy is possessed by the molecules that have a higher temperature, which pushes them to undergo the random motion at higher speeds Which directly influences the rate of diffusion to increase. To put it bluntly, we can say that as we increase the temperature,

The kinetic energy possessed by the molecules will be increased. So the average speed of the molecule also gets increases. This is how the temperature conditions take part in affecting the process of diffusion. Diffusion is basically due to the tendency of the particles to move in the context of the concentration difference in the region.

Let us now know the relation between the coefficient of diffusion and temperature.

How does temperature affect the diffusion coefficient?

A constant is associated with a physical quantity. It acts as a proportionality factor in Fick’s law which involves the relationship between the flux of the molecules undergoing diffusion as well as the gradient of diffusion or the force that is driven.

The diffusion coefficient basically depends on temperature as well as a few other parameters. The diffusion coefficient and temperature both possess a relationship of direct proportionality, i.e., as we go on increasing the temperature, it is found that the diffusion coefficient also increases along with the temperature.

Here, we are going to understand the mathematical proportionality existing between the rate of diffusion and temperature.

What happens to the rate of diffusion if the temperature is raised?

Basically, the diffusion is going to get affected by the kinetic energy. We already learned that increasing temperature becomes directly responsible for increasing molecular speed, which is associated with the kinetic energy possessed. In a similar way, the speed with which molecules flow can be reduced by just decreasing the temperature.

This allows them to transfer faster from the region corresponding to the higher concentration to the lower concentration. The temperature involvement has affected the weight of the particles, i.e., heavier particles tend to interact more effectively with the surroundings.

Name the factors that would influence the rate of diffusion.

The factors that are believed to affect the rate of diffusion are given below,

  • Temperature
  • Size of the particle undergoing diffusion
  • Concentration difference
  • Solvent density
  • Pressure
  • Diffusing substance.

How does the size of the molecule affect the diffusion?

As the molecule size increases, it increases the volume occupied by all the molecules in the region. Now, naturally, it becomes difficult for a larger volume to diffuse through a smaller surface area, thus taking more time for the diffusion making it less effective than before.

Explain the dependence of diffusion over temperature with an example.

Let us consider the example of the diffusion of blood through the water. When we take hot water, the blood molecules are found to diffuse or move faster than when cold water is taken. i.e., they tend to move at a slow rate when made to diffuse in cold water. The same theory can also be understood by considering the food color in the place of blood.

Which is the law that governs the rate of diffusion?

The law stated over the rate of diffusion is Graham’s law which says that the rate of diffusion is related inversely to the square root of the molar mass of the substance under consideration in which the diffusion is being studied.

How is the diffusion related to the hot and cold temperatures?

We can say that the fluid particles tend to flow or undergo diffusion in a faster manner at considerably high temperatures when compared to that at lower temperatures. This can be observed by conducting a simple experiment of mixing food coloring in water. We can see that the food color undoubtedly diffuses quicker in hot water in comparison with cold water.

Image credits: Pixabay free images

In which state of the matter is diffusion more?

It is experimentally observed that the molecules in the gaseous state of the substance tend to undergo diffusion more quickly than that of molecules associated with the solid state of the substance, as in the gaseous state, the molecules are present more freely, and hence they can travel from higher concentration region to the region of lower concentration with lesser collisions or less resistance.

Image credits: Pixabay free images

 

Conclusion

It is proven that the larger amount of kinetic energy is possessed by the molecules that have a higher temperature, which pushes them to undergo the random motion at higher speeds Which directly influences the rate of diffusion to increase. To put it bluntly, we can say that as we increase the temperature, the kinetic energy possessed by the molecules will be increased, so the average speed of the molecule also gets increases.

Harshitha H N

Hi.....I am Harshitha H N. I have completed my master's in Physics from the University of Mysore with a specialization in Nuclear physics. I am well versed in the field of Latex, GAMESS software, and AVAGADRO software. I enjoy exploring new things in my free time. My article always aims to develop and bring some value to the table with relevant topics. Let’s connect through LinkedIn- https://www.linkedin.com/in/harshitha-h-n-368418249

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