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My teacher wanted me to explain the how these characteristics of water make water so important for life on Earth: (A-Levels)

-Temperature range of liquid water
-Specific heat capacity of water
-Density of ice compared with water
-Surface Tension effects of water
-Transparency of water
-Water’s absorption of different wavelengths of light
-Density of water; advantages and disadvantages
-Involvement of water in dispersal of seeds, gametes, etc…
-Water and the mammalian embryo

The one I am having the most trouble in is 'water's role in mammalian embryo', 'density of water (advantages and disadvantages)' and 'water's absorption of different wavelengths of light'.

If someone can explain it to me I swear I would love you forever hahaha
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Report 1 year ago
It's been a while since I've done A Level Bio or Chem (Gap year before uni right now) but I'll see what I remember off the top of my head:

Temperature range - 0 (Freezing) to 100 (Boiling) Celsius that is too
Specific Heat Capacity - 4.18
Density of ice - Ice is less dense, we can see that as it floats on the surface of water, this is due to the Hydrogen bonding that creates a Tetrahedral lattice shape. (Correct me if I'm wrong there) Also, ice protects
Surface Tension - Allows insects that are denser than water to float on top, before fish eat them of course :3
Transparency - Basically allows us to see through water, or for predators to see prey (eg. Bird spotting fish)
Absorption of different wavelengths - I think this is important especially to aquatic plant species where light is scarce and where certain wavelengths can pass through water. So it is therefore important as well, for the plants to have specific pigments that absorb the correct wavelengths of light for photosynthesis.
Density of water - Hmmm, this one's confusing. One thing I can come up with is that Salt Water, is more dense than Freshwater. Freshwater and Saltwater also do not mix which you may have seen on TV or in pictures. Ice formed by saltwater, is more dense than normal ice as well. I think an advantage of this 'heavy ice' may be that it provides some sort of protection to smaller animals such as fish and penguins as seals can't get them (I'm not too sure). The separation of Salt and Fresh water can also impact the species that live in either fresh or salt water (some fish can only live in salt water, again I'm not too sure) so yeah this one is a little confusing to me too lol
Water in seeds and stuff - Give me a little time to go through my old notes because I've forgotten all about plants XD
Water and the Embryo - Hmm, possibly to do with the Amnion? Keeping the foetus suspended in liquid to protect it. But a quick google search shows a lot on Embryogenesis which is something I'm not familiar with at all XD

I hope this has helped a little bit, feel free to correct me on anything and feel free to message me if you have any more questions

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