These are crystals of tetratolylporphyrin forming as a saturated solution cools. Solubility usually decreases with temperature, so sometimes all you need to do to get crystals from a saturated solution is to cool the solution.
Rifleman 82, public domain
It's easy to make a saturated solution for chemistry lab or growing crystals. Here's a look at what a saturated solution is and how to prepare one.
What Is a Saturated Solution?
A saturated solution
is one containing as much solute as possible without forming a precipitate. This is the maximum concentration of solute.
How to Make a Saturated Solution
Here are three ways to make a saturated solution:
How to Grow Crystals
- Add solute to a liquid until no more will dissolve. Keep in mind, solubility often increases with temperature, so you may be able to get more solute into a hot solvent than you would if the solvent was cool. For example, you can dissolve much more sugar in hot water than you can in cold water.
- Evaporate solvent from an unsaturated solution. You can evaporate the solvent by permitting air circulation or by heating the solvent.
- Add a seed crystal to a supersaturated solution. The seed crystal will cause the solute to precipitate, leaving a saturated solution.
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