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Q & A: Melting Ice

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Most recent answer: 10/22/2007
Q:
Does ice melt faster crushed or whole. Why?
- Katie (age 11)
DeMotte Christian , IN
A:
Crushed ice will melt faster than solid ice. It will take a few steps to explain why.

When ice is in water, energy from the water flows into the ice. That warms up the ice and cools down the water. That's why people put ice cubes in drinks. The ice takes energy away from the liquid around it, making the liquid colder. The energy flows out everywhere where the water touches the ice. So that means that if more ice touches the water, then more of it will be able to melt at one time.

Now lets look at our ice. The large ice cubes have a lot of area for the water to touch. But if you look at crushed ice, there is a even more room for water to touch it. Water can fit into all the little areas between each bit of ice. That lets more energy flow and causes the crushed ice to freeze faster.

Adam

(published on 10/22/2007)

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