Factors Affecting the Rate of Diffusion

Factors Affecting the Rate of Diffusion

Concept of Diffusion

  • Diffusion refers to the passive movement of particles from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration.
  • Recognize that diffusion occurs until particles are evenly distributed, establishing equilibrium.
  • Understand that diffusion is an example of passive transport, meaning it doesn’t require any energy.

Factors Influencing the Rate of Diffusion

Concentration Gradient

  • Understand the role of concentration gradient, which refers to the difference in concentration of a substance across a distance.
  • Recognize that a greater concentration gradient leads to a faster rate of diffusion.


  • Learn how increased temperature speed up diffusion. This is because particles move faster at higher temperatures due to increased kinetic energy.

Particle Size

  • Realize the impact of particle size. Smaller particles diffuse faster because they can move around more easily.

Surface Area

  • Grasp the influence of the surface area exposed to the substance. An increased surface area provides more opportunities for particles to move, speeding up diffusion.


  • Understand the effect of medium. Gases generally diffuse faster than liquids because particles are more spread out and can move around more freely in gas.


  • Learn how the distance the particles need to move affects the rate of diffusion. A shorter distance allows for quicker diffusion.

Remember, understanding these factors will help you predict and explain how changes in conditions can affect the rate of diffusion.