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The Importance Water as a molecule

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The Importance Water as a molecule Polar Structure Water has the chemical formula H2O and each water molecule consists of an oxygen atom covalently bonded to two hydrogen atoms at an angle of 104. The oxygen atom has a nucleus containing eight positively charged protons, 8 neutrons and 8 negatively charged electrons. (diagram) The oxygen atom has an overall partial negative charge while the hydrogen atoms have slight positive charges, this is because the electrons are associated with the oxygen nucleus than the hydrogen nuclei and these electrons form a region of negative electric charge, making the whole molecule electrically polarized. It creates partially negative and partially positive charges on the ends of a water molecule. ...read more.


Water also occurs as moisture in the upper portion of the soil profile, in which it is held by capillary action to the particles of soil. The cohesive property in water molecules is very important in transporting materials in solution within organisms. E.g. Transport of ions in solution in the xylem of plants and in the transport of the soluble products of digestion in the blood plasma of animals. Solvent properties Water is the major chemical constituent in cells, of all living matter. From 60 to 95% of the weight of living organisms is water. Water acts as a solvent, transporting, combining, and chemically breaking down the substances including fats, carbohydrates, proteins, salts, and similar chemicals in living cells. ...read more.


E.g. Osmometer experiment. Support role Metabolic role Water also plays a key role in the metabolic breakdown of such essential molecules as proteins and carbohydrates. This process called the hydrolysis goes on continually in living cells. Others Water has a high specific heat capacity, meaning that it requires a lot of energy to raise the temperature of 1kg by 1degree. So it can maintains relatively constant temp. in a long period of time. This is important to sea creatures, because sudden temp. changes in their environment are avoided. Insulation: max density at 4 degree. As the temp of a pool of water falls and the water on the surface freezes and form ice. It insulates the water below, keeping aquatic organisms to live and this is especially important in cold climates and places with cold seasons. ...read more.

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