Ice cubes melt as the molecules of air, water or other substances around the ice transfer heat into the molecules of the ice itself. As the temperature increases, the bonds change inside the ice, entering a liquid phase and turning into water, according to About.com.Know More
Within ice cubes, not all of the solid crystals are aligned precisely with one another. At these junctures, the atoms start to move, a trend that then spreads throughout the crystal, turning the parts that had orderly alignment into chaos as well, according to Live Science. The implication is that there may be liquids inside crystals that have not yet reached the melting point, but Live Science explains that further study is necessary to verify that claim.
Ice cubes tend to melt more quickly in water than if they are left out on a surface at room temperature, even if the water is slightly colder than the room. The reason for this is that the bonds in water at a liquid phase interact with the crystal structures of the ice more effectively than air alone. While heat transfers into the ice from the air, it does so more quickly from liquid. Therefore, dropping ice cubes into a glass of water leads to faster melting than setting those cubes out on the kitchen counter and waiting for them to melt, according to About.com.Learn more about Thermodynamics
Air is a good insulator because its molecules are very far apart. This makes it difficult to transfer heat, according to Dr. Ken Mellendorf, a physics professor at Illinois Central College.Full Answer >
According to Elmhurst College, the molecules in a liquid are packed closely together and make random movements, as the molecules slip past each other. As the liquid is heated, the kinetic energy increases, which causes the motion of the molecules to increase. Eventually, the motion becomes so intense that the forces of attraction between the molecules are disrupted, and the molecules break free of the liquid, becoming a gas.Full Answer >
Water has a high boiling point because its molecules are bound together by hydrogen bonding, which is a very strong intermolecular force. It takes more kinetic energy, or a higher temperature, to break the hydrogen bonding between water molecules, thus allowing them to escape as steam.Full Answer >
In order for a substance to melt, it must absorb enough energy to overcome the intermolecular bonds holding its molecules together. These bonds may be ionic, molecular, covalent or metallic, depending on the material involved. Ionic bonds require the most energy to overcome, while molecular bonds are easier to break.Full Answer >