Types of Solutions

Define Solution

A solution is defined as

a homogenous mixture which mainly comprises of two components namely solute and solvent.

For example, salt and sugar is a good illustration of a solution. A solution can be categorized into several components.

Read more ⇒ Homogeneous Mixture

On the basis of physical states of solvent and solute can be categorized as solid, liquid and gaseous solutions.


In solid solutions, solute and solvent are in the solid-state. For example ceramics, and polymer blends. In liquid solutions, solid, gas or liquid is mixed in a liquid state. Gaseous solutions are usually homogenous mixtures of gases like air. Depending upon a number of solutions and solute, it can be classified into dilute and concentrated solutions.

Different Types of Solutions

Depending upon the dissolution of the solute in the solvent, solutions can be categorized into supersaturated solution, unsaturated and saturated solutions.

  • A supersaturated solution comprises a large amount of solute at a temperature wherein it will be reduced as a result the extra solute will crystallize quickly.
  • An unsaturated solution is a solution in which a solvent is capable of dissolving any more solute at a given temperature.
  • A saturated solution can be defined as a solution in which a solvent is not capable of dissolving any more solute at a given temperature.

The solutions are of two forms, depending on whether the solvent is water or not.

  • Aqueous solution – When a solute is dissolved in water the solution is called an aqueous solution. Eg, salt in water, sugar in water and copper sulfate in water.
  • Non-aqueous solution – When a solute is dissolved in a solvent other than water, it is called a non-aqueous solution. Eg, iodine in carbon tetrachloride, sulphur in carbon disulfide, phosphorus in ethyl alcohol.

Solutions are spoken of as having two components, the solvent, and the solute. Another classification of the solution depends on the amount of solute added to the solvent.

  • A dilute solution contains a small amount of solute in a large amount of solvent.
  • A concentrated solution contains a large amount of solute dissolved in a small amount of solvent.

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A mixture is composed of two or more substance, but they are not chemically combined. In contrast, the compound contains various elements that are bonded to each other. For instance, consider a mixture of salt that is when salt is dissolved in water it is a mixture but ideally, salts consist of two components namely sodium and chlorine.

Here Sodium and Chlorine are bonded together with the electrostatic force of attraction to form sodium chloride even though there is no chemical bond between water and salt in the mixture. Hence, matter can be classified as mixtures, compounds, and elements. Further mixtures can be classified as homogeneous and heterogeneous mixtures.

Read in Detail ⇒ Mixtures

Homogenous and Heterogeneous Solutions

Homogeneous solutions are solutions with uniform composition and properties throughout the solution. For example a cup of coffee, perfume, cough syrup, a solution of salt or sugar in water etc.

Heterogeneous solutions are solutions with non-uniform composition and properties throughout the solution. A solution of oil and water, water and chalk powder and solution of water and sand etc.


Types of Solutions

Aerated drinks, Salt-water or Sugar water mixtures, fruit juices are some examples for solutions. Some solutions are heterogeneous in nature, and they are termed as suspension.

Such suspended particles can be seen quite clearly in the solution. Hence, when light is passed through such solutions, it scatters in different directions. Medicated syrups are one of the finest examples of this.

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