Physics Van 3-site Navigational Menu

Physics Van Navigational Menu

Q & A: Does pure water float above salty water?

Learn more physics!

Most recent answer: 04/30/2015
salt water is denser than normal so why can not normal water float on salt water?
- aadesh malviya (age 15)
deoria up india

Hi Aadesh,

Pure water does float above salty water! A neat manifestation of this are underwater lakes, which are salty pools on the bottom of the ocean. In some places on the ocean floor, there are salt layers which mix with ocean water, making a brine. This forms puddles beneath the less salty ocean that look just like a lake on land. to show you!

-Courtney K

In the very long run, the salt will gradually diffuse up until the top is almost as salty as the bottom. For a long time before that, however, the fresher water just floats on top, like Courtney wrote. /mw

(published on 04/30/2015)

Follow-up on this answer.