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Biological significance of water. - Essay Example

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Undergraduate
Author : mshields
Essay
Biology
Pages 4 (1004 words)

Summary

Water is found on the earth in three forms: solid, liquid and gas; or ice, liquid water and gas respectively. It is essential for all living things and it is often referred to as a universal solvent because many substances dissolve in it…

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Biological significance of water.

Water is found on the earth in three forms: solid, liquid and gas; or ice, liquid water and gas respectively. It is essential for all living things and it is often referred to as a universal solvent because many substances dissolve in it. These unique properties of water result from the ways in which individual H2O molecules interact with each other.Water is the chemical substance with chemical formula H2O: one molecule of water has two hydrogen atoms covalently bonded to a single oxygen atom. Oxygen attracts electrons much more strongly than hydrogen, resulting in a net positive charge on the hydrogen atoms, and a net negative charge on the oxygen atom. The presence of a charge on each of these atoms gives each water molecule a net dipole moment. Electrical attraction between water molecules due to this dipole pulls individual molecules closer together, making it more difficult to separate the molecules and therefore raising the boiling point. This attraction is known as hydrogen bonding. Water can be described as a polar liquid that dissociates disproportionately into the hydronium ion (H3O+(aq)) and an associated hydroxide ion (OH(aq)). Water is in dynamic equilibrium between the liquid, gas and solid states at standard temperature and pressure, and is the only pure substance found naturally on Earth to be so. Water's has a melting point of zero degrees and boiling point of 100 degrees Celsius respectively. These properties are higher than would be expected based on similar compounds. ...
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