What do we mean by “emergent properties”?:
Water is made out of 2 types of atoms. Water is made up of 3 atoms in total, 2 Hydrogen and 1 Oxygen, hence the name H2O. Hydrogen is a natural occurring gas that is important to the storage and transfer of energy to organisms. Oxygen has the same qualities as Hydrogen, but for a different purpose. Water is both Cohesion and Adhesion. For those who do not know what Cohesion and Adhesion mean: Cohesion means that it sticks to itself, and Adhesion means that it sticks to other surfaces.
What gives water its emergent properties?:
Water is both Cohesion and Adhesion. For those who do not know what Cohesion and Adhesion mean: Cohesion means that it sticks to itself, and Adhesion means that it sticks to other surfaces.
Water also absorbs heat, and this helps us measure heat. Water can be a liquid, solid or gas. Water in its liquid form is ‘water’, in its solid form it is ‘ice’, and in its gas form it is ‘steam’. Water is an universal solvent, meaning that it could be used as a base or an acid. Water could dissolve salt and sugar, but you could still taste the salt or sugar but not as strongly. And this is because of its Hydrogen and Oxygen molecules/ atoms. water can dissolve itself when it is H3O.
How does water properties affect life & the environment on a molecule scale?:
Water has a bond called a ‘Hydrogen bond’. A Hydrogen Bond is a weak and short lasting bond that is very important in many biological processes. This Hydrogen bond enables water to separate/ move around an object. If an object, like your hand, is put into water, the water moves around that object, that is because of its hydrogen bond. Allowing fish to swim and boats to float.
When water gets cold, the molecules move away from each other and vibrate in one place giving the explanation of why water expands when it freezes, creating a solid form of water called ‘ice’. Because water expands while it freezes, the molecules makes the forming ice lighter (denser) than water, explaining the reason why ice floats and why we do not live in an ice age. And this is important to the sustaining of life on earth.