Surface Area to Volume Ratio

1. In terms of maximizing diffusion, what was the most effective size cube that you tested?

The most effective was the smallest cube, it fully absorbed (diffused) the pink colouring.

2. Why was that size most effective at maximizing diffusion?  What are the important factors that affect how materials diffuse into cells or tissues?

The large surface area to small volume ratio allowed mazimum dissufion. It proves that the size of our cells (microscopically small) allow oxygen and other substances to easily enter and exit our tissues and cells.

3. If a large surface area is helpful to cells, why do cells not grow to be very large?

It is the ratio that allows the large surface area to be helpful. If cells had a large surface area but also had a large volume the volume would inhibit the cell more than the surface area would help it.

4.You have three cubes, A, B, and C.  They have surface to volume ratios of 3:1, 5:2, and 4:1 respectively.  Which of these cubes is going to be the most effective at maximizing diffusion, how do you know this?

The 4:1 will be the most effective at diffusion because it’s the most surface area with the smallest volume. To compare more equally the volumes would be 24:6, 24:8, and 24:9.6. So, 24:6 or 4:1 is the most effective surface area to volume ratio.

5. How does your body adapt surface area-to-volume ratios to help exchange gases?

Your body has created these tiny cells so that more gases can be absorbed into the cell and the getting rid of used up gases in your cells will also be made easier by less volume and greater surface area.

6. Why can’t certain cells, like bacteria, get to be the size of a small fish?

It would take too long for certain nutruients to reach the inside of the cell and it would take too long for the waste to exit. This would inhibit the cell’s ability to funnction.

7. What are the advantages of large organisms being multicellular?

It allows each cell to work together and to work more efficiently as a unit.

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