science and Technology

What is freezing point depression?

  

Freezing point depression is when a substance lowers the freezing point of another substance. One example of this is adding salt to water. A solution of salt and water has a lower freezing point than water alone.

Melting and freezing: a recap

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Melting is when a solid turns into a liquid. The temperature at which a solid melts is called the melting point.

Freezing is when a liquid turns into a solid. This is called the freezing point and is generally the same as the melting point for the same substance.

Freezing and melting are both reversible processes.

Freezing point depression demonstrations

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Make a frosty tin can
If you place a mixture of salt, water and ice inside a tin can, frost will appear on the outside!

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Cool a drink – FAST!
Place a bottle or can in a bowl of water, ice and salt and you’ll find the temperature of the water drops very quickly with the added bonus of cooling down the drink inside.

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Make ice cream in a bag using ice and salt
Make ice cream in a bag using the freezing power of ice and salt.

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Adding salt to roads in winter
Grit ( salt, gravel and stone ) is often sprayed on roads in winter to stop cars from skidding. When snow falls on a road with grit applied, it mixes with the salt, lowering the snow’s freezing point which stops ice from forming.

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If you’re curious about space, the human body and nature don’t forget to take a look at my other science questions and answers!

Last Updated on February 2, 2023 by Emma VanstoneThe post What is freezing point depression? appeared first on Science Experiments for Kids.