Chemistry

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Properties of water in different sates

The essential about water and its different states

The free surface of water

What is a free surface?
A liquid is in contact with its receptacle but also with air. The liquid surface in contact with air is also called " free surface ".

Diagram: free surface of water:

In a stationary vessel, the free surface of water is always flat and horizontal whatever the inclination of the vessel.

Diagram: free surface of water in an inclined beaker

Properties of the liquids

Diagram: water in a beaker, an erlenmeyer and a measuring cylinder

If liquid water is transferred into graduated containers of different shapes, it can be observed that water takes the same shape as its container but keeps the same volume.
Liquid water has its own volume but no own shape.

Properties of solids

If an ice cube is poured from one container to another it keeps its shape and its volume
Solid water has its own volume and its own shape.

Properties of gases

A gas enclosed in a container occupies all available space: it thus has no own shape.

If some air is enclosed in a plugged syringe its piston can be moved to reduce or to increase the volume of the air: air therefore has no own volume.

To sum up:

 Own shape Own volume Solid Yes Yes Liquid No Yes Gaz No No

Comment:
The sand (like other substances composed of powder or grains) has properties that are close to those of liquids.
Each grain has a own shape and a own volume but the sand takes the shape its receptacle: it therefore has no own form (like a liquid).
However unlike liquids, its free surface isn't necessarily flat and horizontal.

Basic properties of fluids and definition:
http://www.brighthub.com/engineering/civil/articles/42883.aspx

Properties of gases:
http://www.chemtutor.com/gases.htm

Properties of liquids, solids and gases explained for grade 4:
http://www.nyu.edu/pages/mathmol/textbook/statesofmatter.html

 Science class Mechanics lessons Water Water on Earth Changes of state in the nature: the water cycle Water in human body Test for water Properties of water in different states States of matter States of matter and its changes Boiling water Water: freezing and melting Changes of state: mass and volume Molecules in different states of matter Mixtures and solutions Heterogeneous mixtures Homogeneous mixtures Decantation Centrifugation Filtration Vaporization of water Distillation Chromatography Dissolving a solid in water Conservation of mass on dissolving Miscibility in water Mass and volume Volume and its units Measuring volume with a graduated cylinder Mass and its units Measuring the mass of a liquid Mass of a liter of water Volumetric mass density Air and atmosphere Earth's atmosphere protect us Pressure Atoms and molecules Molecules Molecules in mixtures and pure substances Molecules and states of matter Atoms Composition of molecules Constituents of the atoms The electrical neutrality of the atom Combustions Basics of combustion The combustion of carbon The combustion of butane Atoms and chemical reactions Chemical reactions Chemical equations Law of conservation of mass Chemical synthesis Metals Most common metals How to distinguish metals ? Corrosion of metals Electrical conductivity of solid materials Electrons and free electrons Electric current in metals Ions The conductivity of aqueous solutions Aqueous solutions and ions The direction of movement of ions Formation of ions Tests for ions Acidic and basic solutions pH of aqueous solutions Ions in acidic and basic solutions Dilution of acids and bases Composition of hydrochloric acid Chemical reaction between iron and hydrochloric acid Electrochemical cells and chemical energy Chemical reaction beteween a copper sulphate solution and zinc Copper sulfate and zinc battery Basics of electrochemical cell