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Homework Help: Temperature range question

  1. Jun 30, 2007 #1
    Which spans a greater temperature range, a change in temperature os 10 Fahrenheit degrees or a change in 10 Celcius degrees?

    Using 0 and 100 degrees C and 32 and 212F as references show that a change in 10 degrees Celsius gives a temperature range of 90 (100 – 10). A change in 10 F gives a range of 170 (212-42), so Fahrenheit spans a greater range in temperature.

    Is that a Question to mislead you or am on the right track.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 30, 2007 #2


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    The simple way to do this is to convert one into the other; i.e. convert 10 degrees farenheit into degrees celcius. Then you have each measurement in the same units, and so can compare the size of the numbers. So, do you know how to convert degrees farenheit into degrees celcius?
  4. Jun 30, 2007 #3


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    10 degrees C is 1/10 of the distance from freezing to boiling (10/(100-0)). 10 degrees F is 1/18 of the distance from freezing to boiling (10/(212-32)). Which spans a greater range? Your calculation of 'range' has nothing to do with what I would think of as a 'range'.
  5. Jun 30, 2007 #4
    So the conversion of 10 degrees is 10/100 = 0.1
    the conversion to degrees F is 10/180 = 0.0555
    The one that has the greater range is degrees?
  6. Jun 30, 2007 #5


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    They are both 'degrees'. The celsius range (1/10) is greater than the fahrenheit range (1/18) of the same interval. But I was just trying to make some sense out of your calc. To avoid confusion and be more straightforward just do as Christo suggests. Convert 10 degrees C to degrees F and see if it is larger than 10 degrees F.
  7. Jun 30, 2007 #6


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    I don't think it is intended to mislead you but I think you are misinterpreting the question. A "change in 10 degrees Celsius" does NOT "give a temperature range of of 90". You appear to be thinking "change 0 to 100 to 10 to 100". What they mean is "what happens if the temperature changes 10 degrees?" That is, suppose the temperature is 40 degrees Celsius and changes to 50 degrees Celsius. Is that a large a temperature change as if the temperature changes from 40 degrees Fahrenheit to 50 degrees Fahrenheit?

    You know that, in the Celsius scale, water freezes at 0 degrees and boils at 100 degrees. A 10 degree change is 10% of that. In the Fahrenheit scale, water boilds at 32 degrees and boils at 212 degrees. That same change in actual temperature corresponds to a change of 212- 32= 180 degrees Fahrenheit. A 10 degree change is 10/180= 1/18 of that.

    So which is a larger change in "actual" temperature? A change of 10 degrees Celsius or a change of 10 degrees Fahrenheit?
  8. Jun 30, 2007 #7
    converting one into the other
    50 F to 60F = 10 to 15.555
    50 Celsius to 60 Celsius =122 to 140
    So therefore degrees Celsius has the greater range
  9. Jun 30, 2007 #8


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    You don't need to convert both. Just convert C to F or vice versa. Not both. One degree C=9/5 degree F. Does that help?
  10. Jun 30, 2007 #9
    yes that makes it clearer now. thanks
  11. Jun 30, 2007 #10
    are you mike27 at another forum?
  12. Jul 1, 2007 #11
    No i am not mike27 on a different forum.
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