Learn more physics!
how much vacume dose it take to turn liquid mercury into a vapor?
- Duane Jones (age 39)
conway sc usa
Here's something that seams a little odd. You can cause a liquid to
boil at a temperature below its boiling point! To understand this, you
need to know the real reason liquids will boil. There is a special
number called the "vapor pressure" of a liquid or solid. The vapor
pressure changes with temperature. When the vapor pressure of the
liquid is the same as the pressure around it, the liquid will begin to
boil. You may have heard about how water boils faster up in the
mountains. That's because the pressure is lower high above gound. As
the water heats up, the vapor pressure equals the outside pressure
So the amount of vacuum needed to vaporize mercury is the same as
the vapor pressure of mercury at whatever temperature you're looking
Here's a few numbers for you about mercury's vapor pressure:
22C --> 0.0014 torr
38C --> 0.0050 torr
100C --> 0.26 torr
Notice how the vapor pressure gets higher as the temperature goes up.
(republished on 07/24/06)
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