Colligative Properties of Solutions
Colligative properties are properties that depend primarily on the concentration of particles and not the type of particle. There is usually a direct relationship between the concentration of particles and the effect recorded.
The vapor pressure of an aqueous solution is always lowered by the addition of more solute. From the molecular standpoint, it is easy to see that there are fewer molecules of water per unit volume in liquid, and therefore fewer molecules of water in the vapor phase are required to maintain equilibrium. The concentration in the vapor drops and so does the pressure that molecules exert.
Notice that the effects of this change in vapor pressure are registered in the freezing point and the boiling point. The freezing point is lowered, and the boiling point is raised, in direct proportion to the number of particles of solute present. For water solutions, the concentration expression that expresses this relationship is molality (m) that is, the number of moles of solute per kilogram of solvent. For molecules that do not dissociate, it has been found that a 1 m solution freezes at -1.86 degrees C and boils at 100.51 degrees C. A 2 m solution would then freeze at twice this lowering, or -3.72 degrees C, and boil at twice the 1 molal increase of 0.51 degrees C, or 101.02 degrees C.