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Water

Indophile
Posts: 1,414
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2/14/2012 1:47:13 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Is there something to be made of the property of water to expand just before it freezes?

Is there any other molecule that has this property?

Is it a "miracle", or just unexplained and to be left at that? (Or course, there is a scientific explanation of why it expands, but why only water should do so?)
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OberHerr
Posts: 13,062
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2/14/2012 3:12:14 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I think other liquid elements do this as well.....
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ConservativePolitico
Posts: 8,210
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2/14/2012 3:27:16 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/14/2012 1:47:13 PM, Indophile wrote:
Is there something to be made of the property of water to expand just before it freezes?

Is there any other molecule that has this property?

Is it a "miracle", or just unexplained and to be left at that? (Or course, there is a scientific explanation of why it expands, but why only water should do so?)

I don't think this is a miracle.

However, water is the only liquid we know of (I'm pretty sure) that freezes from the top down allowing fish to live under the ice during the winter.

Most other liquid forms of elements and compounds that aren't water based freeze from the bottom up.

This is an interesting property of water.
Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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2/14/2012 3:35:49 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I THINK (not certain) that because it's properties evaporate at much lower temperatures, this changes how much it expands by (or something). Again, may be wrong here.

Also, reminds me of this:

http://i2.kym-cdn.com...
http://www.polyvore.com...
http://www.blogcdn.com...
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Wnope
Posts: 6,924
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2/14/2012 5:19:15 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/14/2012 1:47:13 PM, Indophile wrote:
Is there something to be made of the property of water to expand just before it freezes?

Is there any other molecule that has this property?

Is it a "miracle", or just unexplained and to be left at that? (Or course, there is a scientific explanation of why it expands, but why only water should do so?)

When you cool heated molecules to a certain point, they lock into crystalline structures. The pattern has more surface area than when the molecules are simply jumbling about, so it appears that the "water" has expanded while turning into "ice." In fact, "water" and "ice" are just two descriptions of how H20 molecules interact at different levels of excitation.
Lasagna
Posts: 2,440
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2/14/2012 6:53:08 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
The only valid philisophical explanation that exists, as far as I know, is the anthropic principle. The fact that water behaves in the reverse of the other liquids is crucial to forming life, because otherwise lakes would all freeze solid and life would be almost impossible in any lake that isn't in the tropics. This is just one of a thousand, if not a million "coincidences" that allows life to take hold on our planet, and we can simply say that if the laws of physics acted any differently, then we simply would not be here to ask the question. One can appeal to the strong version and say that all possible arrangements of physics in fact do happen at some point and time and we are simply living in the only one that has all the bazillions of variables precisely aligned to allow our existence. Since we wouldn't exist in any other arrangement, it really doesn't matter how rare it is because we would simply wait for eternity until the right one happened and then pop up as if no time had passed at all.
Rob