Physics Van 3-site Navigational Menu

Physics Van Navigational Menu

Q & A: Are human bodies denser than water?

Learn more physics!

Most recent answer: 09/13/2015
Q:
Are people dense than water?
- seah meng kwang (age 13)
malaysia
A:

Overall, counting our lungs, no, we're less dense. Quick proof: we can float in the sea, so we are less dense than sea water. We can also somewhat float in swimming pools, similarly suggesting we are less dense than fresh water. But a potential pitfall here is that we are referring to your overall density including the large volume of air in your lungs. Similar to the case that ships (containing air) can stay afloat although a piece of steel would sink, some tissues may sink. Some tissues (bone) are denser than water, others (fat) are less dense, and others (muscle) are about the same. Overall, without the air in the lungs, it looks like most people would  sink: http://www.quora.com/What-is-the-density-of-the-human-body.

Tunc and Mike W.


(published on 09/13/2015)

Follow-up on this answer.