1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Homework Help: A small, tiny question

  1. Sep 9, 2010 #1
    I have just learned 'heat capacity'. But I'm curious: does heat capacity apply to a substance's current state (solid, liquid or gas) or does it apply to all of its state?

    eg. Water has a specific heat capacity of 4200 J kg-1 K-1, so does that mean ice and steam both have similar heat capacity as water?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 9, 2010 #2
    Nope, that figure you cited is the specific heat capacity of liquid water. Note that it varies slightly as a function of temperature, most noticeably near freezing point (Although even then it is a negligible variation).

    For reference, the heat capacities of ice and steam can be found here:
  4. Sep 9, 2010 #3
    So, heat capacity of ice and steam is not the same as liquid water? Don't understand what you are talking about :tongue:
  5. Sep 9, 2010 #4


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Yes, they are different.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook