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Water properties

Ūdens fizikālās un ķīmiskās īpašības

The physical and chemical properties of the water are the source of life on earth. Water participates in many biological processes. It is a perfect solvent and therefore it contains many impurities and organic matter. Moreover, the water and its properties maintains the life of the human body, ensures normal cell functioning, thermoregulation and elimination of toxins.

In this article we will consider the aspect of physical and chemical properties of the water in order to understand its role and  importance.


Pure water has neither taste nor smell. At normal temperature (20 degrees of Celsius) it is found in liquid form. The chemical name of the water is hydrogen oxide. It clearly shows that the water molecule consists of hydrogen and oxygen ions. The valence of the hydrogen atom (the ability to form bonds) is 1 and the valence of the oxygen atom is 2. That is why the formula of drinking water is H2O.

Properties of water

Water has a high boiling point (100°C). If there were no hydrogen bonds the water would boil at -80°C and freeze at -100°C. The unique structure of the water allows us to see it in three conditions: ice, liquid and gas.

The polarity of the water molecules makes it an excellent solvent. Due to water’s ability to dissolve many substances it plays an important role in many biological and chemical processes.


Water interaction with simple substances

  • Water interaction with alkaline earth metals occurs as a result of the release of heat and light. Sodium, potassium and calcium can move and even “jump” through water.

2Na + 2H2O = H2 + 2NaOH.

  • Less active metals react with water when heated or do not react at all (e.g. iron).

3Fe + 4H2O = 4H2 + Fe3O4 (heated)

  • Corrosion is common when the water interacts with air and forms rust on iron surfaces.

4Fe + 3O2 + 6H2O ➝ 4Fe(OH)3.

Similar processes can also occur with copper, zinc and their alloys.

Ūdens fizikālās un ķīmiskās īpašības

Water interaction with non-metallic oxides

The water often naturally reacts with carbon dioxide as well as sulfur and nitrogen oxides which are components of exhaust gases. Acid rain is formed as a result of this reaction.

SO2 + H2O = H2SO4 .


This unique response to sunlight allows plants to synthesize nutrients.

6nCO2 + 5nH2O = (C6H10O5) n + 6nO2​​.

Ūdens fizikālās un ķīmiskās īpašības


The water is a perfect solvent, many processes take place without our eyes seeing it. There is no water in nature that does not contain impurities. Inorganic salts and gases are always dissolved in the water and in the case of anthropogenic influence a huge range of organic substances is also found in it.

Ūdens fizikālās un ķīmiskās īpašības

For example, the natural hardness of the water forms because the water moves through the rocks and it is saturated with minerals. Depending on the composition of the rocks, their solubility and the temperature there are certain water hardness concentrations available. The main minerals that forms the water hardness are gypsum, dolomite and limestone.

As for dissolved iron and manganese- they are mainly common in natural well waters. Soluble iron salts are usually found in places where there is little air.

Hydrogen sulfide is stored deeper in groundwater as a product of chemical processes between organic matter. In air it tends to oxidize to elemental sulfur and precipitate.

Natural surface water always contain dissolved oxygen and nitrogen-containing components – ammonium, nitrites and nitrates.


The water plays a key role in maintaining the life and health of the human body. Its properties affects many aspects of the body’s functioning:

  • The water is the main component of cells, tissues and organs. Regular use of the water maintains an optimal level of hydration ensuring normal cell function.
  • The water participates in thermoregulation processes. As the water evaporates through sweat and breathing, it helps to cool the body in case of increased temperature.
  • The water helps to transport nutrients and oxygen to the cells of organs and tissues.
  • It also helps in various biochemical processes, for example, to split the food in the stomach.
  • Water plays an important role in eliminating toxins and waste through the urinary system and sweat.
  • Water is involved in maintaining the optimal pH level in the body.
  • Drinking enough water helps improve digestion.

That is why it is very important to consume enough water to ensure normal body functioning and maintain overall health.

Read also: What do the water indicators say?

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