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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.
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