Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Why does water have a high specific heat?

  1. Aug 17, 2005 #1
    I am writting an essay for AP biology when I realize I am not entirely sure why water has a high specific heat. I thought for a moment it may be because of its polarity and hydrogen bonds keeping the molecules from moving too much too easily in a sense. I only have one day to do thats :surprised . I searched google and all I got were pages saying that water has high specific heat, but not why.

    Thanks :smile:
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 18, 2005 #2

    Gokul43201

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Because it is one of the lightest non-linear molecules.

    1. low molecular mass - so more moles per kg
    2. non-linear molecule - all 3 rotational degrees of freedom contribute to the specific heat

    PS : see also NH3
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: Why does water have a high specific heat?
Loading...