Science Revision on Condensation
(Water cycle topic)
Which side does condensation takes place?
In the topic of water cycle, there are many processes involved. This article aims to help your child in his or her science revision of condensation process. Your child can use this notes and apply to other practice questions.
Your child might come across this:
Two enclosed rooms, separated by a glass panel, are at different temperatures.
On which side of the glass panel does water droplets form?
Many times, your child might have difficulty finding out which side of the glass panel does water droplets form.
In order to do this, we need to apply the scientific concept of condensation.
What is condensation?
Warmer water vapour touches the cooler surface, loses heat and condenses to form water droplets.
By looking at the explanation on condensation, we can see two criteria:
1) Warmer water vapour
2) Cooler surface
(Take note: the cooler surface must be at a lower temperature than the warmer water vapour).
Correct: The warmer water vapour loses heat to the cooler surface.
Correct: The cooler surface gains heat from the warmer water vapour
Wrong: The cooler surface loses heat to the warmer water vapour.
Going back to the question
Using the two criterias for condensation, let’s find out two things:
1)which room has warmer water vapour and
2) where is the cooler surface?
1) Room A is at a higher temperature than room B.
That means the temperature of the water vapour in Room A is higher than room B.
Take note: Air contains a mixture of gases such as nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide and water vapour.
2) Room B is at a lower temperature than room A.
Glass panel is in contact with room B. Glass panel is losing heat to room B and becomes cool.
Glass panel is the cooler surface.
Applying the condensation concept,
Warmer water vapour in room A touches the cooler surface of the glass panel, loses heat and condenses to form water droplets.
To illustrate, you can draw an arrow to “visualise” how heat flows.
Answer: Left side of the glass panel.
Exam questions on condensation process
Question 1: Which side of the glass panels do you expect to see water droplets (condensation taking place)?
When we see clues such as “water droplets”, the examiner is most likely testing your understanding of condensation concepts.
Apply the scientific process of condensation, let’s find out two things:
1)which room has warmer water vapour and
2) cooler surface
- Between Room A and B
Room B is warmer than room A.The water vapour in room B is warmer than room A. Warmer water vapour in room B loses heat to the cooler surface of the glass panel. Condensation of warmer water vapour in room B to water droplets has taken places as shown below.
- Between Room B and C
Room C is warmer than room B. The water vapour in room C is warmer than room B. Warmer water vapour in room C loses heat to the cooler surface of the glass panel. Condensation of warmer water vapour in room C to water droplets has taken places as shown below.
Final answer is shown below:
Question 2: Arrange the rooms starting from the highest temperature to the lowest temperature
How to tackle this question?
The first clue is the number of water droplets in Room C compared to Room A.
The second clue is the water droplets are present in room C and Room A.
Applying the scientific process of condensation, warmer water vapour loses heat to the cooler surface of the glass panel to form water droplets.
This is illustrated in the arrows above.
That shows Room A and Room C are warmer than Room B. Room B has the lowest temperature.
we realise the number of water droplets in room C is higher than in room A.
With a higher temperature in room C, the water vapour will lose heat and condense faster than the water vapour in room A. More water droplets are formed in room C than A.
That means room C has the highest temperature, followed by room A then C.
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