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Evaporation Rates of Water in Different Colored Buckets

  1. Mar 1, 2016 #1
    I have a question regarding the evaporation rates of water in different colored materials. Kirchoffs laws of radiation state that a black body is both a perfect absorber and emitter of heat. This also means that a black material will cool down quicker than a white one. So if I had three buckets filled with the same amount of water, all made of the same material - one black, one white, and one with a mirrored finish, and placed said buckets in the sun, would the water in the black bucket evaporate quicker than the water in the white/ reflective (mirrored) buckets?
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 1, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Yes, water in the black bucket will evaporate quicker, but not because it cools down faster, but because it gets hot faster.

    Have you seen solar camp shower bags? That's the same principle.
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