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How does gas turn into a solid?
- Britt (age 11)
Sometimes a solid turns to a gas by 'subliming'. The molecules or atoms
of the solid simply fly off the surface (thanks to thermal energy- the
jiggling that things with a temperature have) into a gas. At ordinary
pressures, the CO2 in dry ice does that. Other times, the solid first
melts to a liquid, in which the molecules still stick together but not
in a regular pattern. Then molecules evaporate away from the liquid.
Water under ordinary pressure does that. However, if there are few of
the molecules around in the gas, some subliming will occur even for
solids that will melt to liquids. For example, in most freezers ice
cubes will gradually sublime away even though they're too cold to melt.
Whoops- I realize now you asked how a gas turns into a solid, not
how a solid turns into a gas. Take everything I wrote and run it in
(republished on 07/25/06)
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