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    I've got an essay to do on the chemical and physical properties of water... Can anyone think of physical properties of water other than the fact that it has surface tension, and it's a liquid? :confused:

    EDIT: Oh, and it's for an As level...
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    -very good solvent for polar molecules (due to hydrogen bonds)
    -it takes 4.2 joules of energy to heat 1 g of water by 1°C (ie a lot). It means that water does not change temperature very easily. This minimises fluctuations in temperature inside cells, and it also means that sea temperature is remarkably constant.
    -water requires a lot of energy to change state from a liquid into a gas so is a cooling mechanism in animals (sweating) and plants (transpiration)
    - ice is less dense than water, hence ice floats on water- this is useful for organisms living in say ponds where the ice can help 'minimise' the cold.
    -water molecules "stick together" due to their hydrogen bond-tis explains why long columns of water can be sucked up tall trees by transpiration without breaking. also explains surface tension, which allows small animals to walk on water.
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    You could mention that:

    -It is the so called ''universal solvent'', as it dissolves more substances than any other liquid.
    -It's ph is 7 i.e. neutral
    -Has a high specific heat ( It takes a lot of energy to heat it one degree). This is important as it helps organisms regulate their body temperature.
    - It's the only substance on Earth that exists in all three physical states of matter i.e. solid, liquid and gas.
    -When water freezes it expands. This is unusual a substance in its liquid form usually has a lower density than in its solid form, however with water this is the opposite. It's maximum density is at 4 degrees celsius.
    -Capiallary action is the mode of transport of water in plants which allows water to be carried long distances from root to leaf (for photosynthesis) through the xylem.

    There are probably quite a few others but those are just some that have come to me now. Hope that helps
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    Thanks, that all helps a lot, since the next part of the question is, 'describe the functions of water in animals and plants, use references to the previous part'.

    A lot of what you've said I've never been taught, so I'm really grateful!
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    I'm assuming this is probably Foundation Biology from OCR part of biological molecules?

    Some of the plants stuff (surface tension etc) will become a clearer once you do Transport module.
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    (Original post by Fleff)
    Thanks, that all helps a lot, since the next part of the question is, 'describe the functions of water in animals and plants, use references to the previous part'.

    A lot of what you've said I've never been taught, so I'm really grateful!
    functions: osmosis. plants...theres millions, osmosis into root cells, transpiration, mass flow of substances etc etc. in humans, you have water as an essential element in the filtering of tissue fluid, and in the kidney. possibly also sweat as it contain so much heat energy
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    (Original post by hihihihi)
    I'm assuming this is probably Foundation Biology from OCR part of biological molecules?

    Some of the plants stuff (surface tension etc) will become a clearer once you do Transport module.
    Absolutely no idea :confused: ... This is the first essay we've had to do: we haven't really learnt anything extra since GCSE yet, other than what happens (and why) when polysaccharides are hydrolised, and when monosaccharides are condensed. Which involves water, which is (I assume) why we've been given this to do, since the work we're doing has nothing obvious to do with water other than that.
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    (Original post by priya)
    functions: osmosis. plants...theres millions, osmosis into root cells, transpiration, mass flow of substances etc etc. in humans, you have water as an essential element in the filtering of tissue fluid, and in the kidney. possibly also sweat as it contain so much heat energy
    I knew how to answer the second part really, it was the first one about properties of water that I was thinking of...
 
 
 

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