I was given an assignment to find out if sand is a mixture or a compound I'm sure it can't be an element. Considering the fact that a mixture contains two or more substances that are not chemically combined and not proportionally fixed and a compound is contained substances that are chemical combined and are fixed proportionally. Sand contains a lot of divided small rocks and mineral particles.

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    $\begingroup$ Indeed you are correct. It is not an element. Now tell us about your thoughts on whether it is a mixture or a compound. Perhaps you could start by telling us your definition of mixtures and compounds and how this applies to sand. $\endgroup$ – bon Feb 6 '16 at 15:32
  • $\begingroup$ Filter through this. $\endgroup$ – bonCodigo Nov 19 '17 at 3:49

Sand is a mixture. Sand is classified as a heterogeneous mixture because it does not have the same properties, composition and appearance throughout the mixture. A homogeneous mixture has a uniform mix throughout.

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    $\begingroup$ I guess there are different kinds of sand. $\endgroup$ – Ivan Neretin Feb 7 '16 at 21:45
  • $\begingroup$ This answer doesn't actually explain why sand is a mixture. It just states that it is. $\endgroup$ – bon Feb 7 '16 at 22:32
  • $\begingroup$ Indeed there are different kinds of sand. White Sands National Monument has gypsum "sand" and the "black sand" on the Punaluu Black Sand Beach in Hawaii is ground up volcanic rock. $\endgroup$ – MaxW Feb 28 '16 at 18:27

The main component of sand is $\ce{SiO2}$, silicon dioxide. If you purified the sand, you could obtain a pure compound, but in general, natural deposits of sand have $\ce{SiO2}$ and a lot of other "stuff" (e.g. organic molecules, iron oxides, and even biological matter), which is called a mixture.


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