Water expands by a factor of 112, or roughly 9 percent, when it freezes. Water, unlike most other liquids, forms stronger hydrogen bonds as temperatures drop. This leads to a crystal lattice structure with voids left between molecules. As the molecules arrange themselves in this manner, the substance expands and becomes less dense.Know More
Water molecules normally slide passed one another fluidly and easily, but when the temperature drops to below freezing, the two hydrogen atoms align with their neighbors. This alignment eventually becomes a rigid, crystal structure, leaving openings between the molecules. These open areas are where the overall volume of the substance has increased, or expanded, by approximately 9 percent, which is why ice floats on water and does not sink.
If water did not expand when frozen, Earth would be a different place. If water contracted when frozen, it would be more dense than the surrounding water and sink. This would leave ice submerged and out of reach of sunlight, while freezing fish and animals living at or near the bottom. The submerged ice would also slowly cool the planet, leading to a cold and inhospitable environment for life as it is known today, particularly so for human life.Learn more about States of Matter
The human brain knows that water is wet based on temperature, movement and texture. Human skin does not have sensors that tell the brain water is wet, which is why the other qualities of water are so important and allow humans to recognize wetness.Full Answer >
One of the unique characteristics of water is that it is found in three different states at surface temperatures of the Earth: gas, liquid and solid. Additionally, its specific heat capacity is much higher than that of other substances.Full Answer >
The speed at which water freezes varies greatly from one situation to the next. However, there are some primary variables from which a general estimate can be formed. The temperature of the water and its surroundings are the most important factors when determining the rate at which water freezes.Full Answer >
Water that has been heated to the point that it transforms into its gas form is simply known as water vapor, or sometimes simply as vapor. Water vapor, in its own pure form, is invisible, unlike the water and its solid form, ice.Full Answer >