Water is the very essence of life. In order for most living things to survive, water is required. Water never disappears; it is recycled over and over again. The water that dinosaurs drank is the same exact water that we have today! There are many amazing characteristics of water and we are going to discuss briefly about this essential element. It is also important to know the characteristics as all living creatures are created from water that was given in Qur’an (The Holy Book of Islam) 1400 years ago, later discovered by the scientists recently.
Important Characteristics of Water
There are many characteristics of water depending on different variables. Here are 10 important characteristics of water described below in brief.
- Water will bond to itself: Cohesion is where substances of the same make-up are attracted to each other. Water will stick to water.
- Water is able to store heat efficiently: Water retains heat longer than many other substances because it takes longer to heat. Heat from our bodies is removed when we sweat; sweat is water leaving our bodies.
- Water will bond to other substances: Adhesion is when substances are attracted to substances of different make-up. Water will bond to substances other than itself, such as when water drops stick to a window.
- Neutral pH of water: When something is neutral, it has a pH of 7. When an acid is dissolved in pure water or water that is neutral, hydrogen ions are formed. When a base is dissolved in pure water, hydroxide ions are then formed.
- Water is polar: Polarity is when the water molecules have an uneven distribution of their charge. There are negatively charged molecules and then there are positively charged molecules and these are not in balance. They are attracted to ions or charged molecules as well as other polar molecules.
- Water density: The density of water changes depending on which state water is in. Water that is frozen, or ice, is less dense than when in liquid form. That is the reason why ice floats.
- Surface tension: At the surface of water, molecules will link together to form a film. This keeps the water strong from being easily broken. Surface tension allows things to be able to float instead of sink.
- Decreased freezing point due to increased salinity: Water has to be colder and colder before it will truly freeze when there are many dissolved substances within it. This is because there are many more molecules to bond. These molecules interfere with the ability of the water molecules being able to bond together for freezing.
- Non-polar substances cannot dissolve in water: Since water is classified as polar it does not mix with anything that is non-polar. Oil is non-polar and when water is mixed with oil, the molecules separate leaving the oil molecules clinging to each other and the water molecules doing the same.
- Freezing point of water: Water is able to freeze at 32 degrees Fahrenheit or 0 degrees Celsius. Water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit or 100 degrees Celsius.