Ice Floats - Chemistry Project answers questions

Ice Floats

ice water

To see that ice takes up more room than water does, stick a piece of tape to a glass of water. Fill the glass with water up to the tape, and put it in the freezer. When the water is frozen into ice, take it out. Is the water at the same level it was at before?

Because ice takes up more room than water, it is less dense: ice has more space between the molecules than water does. That makes ice float on top of water. Try putting an ice cube in water to see.

It's a good thing for us that ice floats, because otherwise when the top of the oceans froze, that ice would sink to the bottom, and then the new water on top would freeze and sink to the bottom, and pretty soon the oceans would be frozen solid and we would have no water to live on.

Another project with ice
More about ice

Bibliography and further reading about ice:

Chemistry home

Professor Carr

Karen Eva Carr, PhD.
Assoc. Professor Emerita, History
Portland State University

Professor Carr holds a B.A. with high honors from Cornell University in classics and archaeology, and her M.A. and PhD. from the University of Michigan in Classical Art and Archaeology. She has excavated in Scotland, Cyprus, Greece, Israel, and Tunisia, and she has been teaching history to university students for a very long time.

Professor Carr's PSU page

Help support! (formerly "History for Kids") is entirely supported by your generous donations and by our sponsors. Most donors give about $10. Can you give $10 today to keep this site running? Or give $50 to sponsor a page?

With the Presidential inauguration this weekend, it's a good time to review the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and all the Constitutional amendments since the Bill of Rights. Also check out our articles on people who have been excluded from power in the United States - Native Americans, people of color, Mormons, Quakers, women...