The Frozen Water Bottle
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Thread: The Frozen Water Bottle

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    T-Mo's Avatar
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    The Frozen Water Bottle

    Any idea why this happens:

    The Frozen Water Bottle
    Without ice cream, there will be darkness and chaos!
    Olympian Don Kardong

    1965 110s, 1966 110, 1967 112, 2001 LT150, 2003 GT245, 2004 GX345, 2006 X320

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    When you leave the water undisturbed in an unopened bottle, all of the surfaces of the water are completely smooth. With no irregularities or existing ice crystals in the water, it tends to resist freezing and becomes "super cooled". Once you disturb the water, there will be imperfections in the water surface that will promote ice crystal growth. Once you have one...

    Notice in the video how the ice formation starts in one place and then seems to "flow"... This is because new ice crystals are forming on existing ones, and that sort of goes "through" the water instead of ice forming randomly.

    The reality is that the water does not actually freeze. When water freezes, the molecule structure changes and it requires additional space. If the water in the bottle actually froze (turned completely to ice) the bottle would "explode" out and bulge. What's really happening inside is that you're getting more of a thick slush than you are ice.
    ---

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    Sawdust's Avatar
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    rgd
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    A couple areas of physics are coming in to play here.
    1. Nature abhors a vacuum.
    2.If you lower the pressure you lower the freeze point/boiling point...and vise versa.

    Think of a pressure cooker...you are raising the pressure inside the container which allows the water temperature to get up to about 240 degrees before turning into steam. This also works in reverse. If you lower the pressure in the container,you could have the water boiling....at for example...70 degrees if you have it in a deep enough vacuum.
    BTW....this is why you use a vacuum pump on an a/c system....you are boiling off any moisture within the unit .

    The bottle is moved from an area above freezing to an area below freezing and let stand for awhile. You have lowered the temperature of the water in the bottle...but the air bubble inside the bottle is at pressure (very slight) above surrounding ambient. This is due to the following physics rule:
    (Heated air expands,cooled air contracts).

    The air inside of the bottle was equalized to the original warmer surroundings and moved to where the air outside has contracted due to being cooler.
    The seal of the bottle wont allow the air inside to contract so it will stay at a slightly higher pressure than its new ambient pressure.

    The surface tension of the water is holding back that pressure. When you disturb the tension it allows the water molecules to more or less absorb/overcome some of that pressure (expansion) and it turns the water to ice. If you allowed the bottled water to stay outside long enough the pressure inside of the bottle would equalize to ambient through the microscopic porosity of the plastic and freeze. .....or you could simply take the top off and it would instantly freeze.....happens to my beer all the dang time!!!
    Last edited by rgd; 09-28-2012 at 10:39 PM.
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    Senior GTT Super Slacker Gizmo2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rgd View Post
    A couple areas of physics are coming in to play here.
    1. Nature abhors a vacuum.
    2.If you lower the pressure you lower the freeze point/boiling point...and vise versa.

    Think of a pressure cooker...you are raising the pressure inside the container which allows the water temperature to get up to about 240 degrees before turning into steam. This also works in reverse. If you lower the pressure in the container,you could have the water boiling....at for example...70 degrees if you have it in a deep enough vacuum.
    BTW....this is why you use a vacuum pump on an a/c system....you are boiling off any moisture within the unit .

    The bottle is moved from an area above freezing to an area below freezing and let stand for awhile. You have lowered the temperature of the water in the bottle...but the air bubble inside the bottle is at pressure (very slight) above surrounding ambient. This is due to the following physics rule:
    (Heated air expands,cooled air contracts).

    The air inside of the bottle was equalized to the original warmer surroundings and moved to where the air outside has contracted due to being cooler.
    The seal of the bottle wont allow the air inside to contract so it will stay at a slightly higher pressure than its new ambient pressure.

    The surface tension of the water is holding back that pressure. When you disturb the tension it allows the water molecules to more or less absorb/overcome some of that pressure (expansion) and it turns the water to ice. If you allowed the bottled water to stay outside long enough the pressure inside of the bottle would equalize to ambient through the microscopic porosity of the plastic and freeze. .....or you could simply take the top off and it would instantly freeze.....happens to my beer all the dang time!!!
    Don't open it.
    Keith

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    Quote Originally Posted by rgd View Post
    A couple areas of physics are coming in to play here.
    1. Nature abhors a vacuum.
    2.If you lower the pressure you lower the freeze point/boiling point...and vise versa.

    Think of a pressure cooker...you are raising the pressure inside the container which allows the water temperature to get up to about 240 degrees before turning into steam. This also works in reverse. If you lower the pressure in the container,you could have the water boiling....at for example...70 degrees if you have it in a deep enough vacuum.
    BTW....this is why you use a vacuum pump on an a/c system....you are boiling off any moisture within the unit .

    The bottle is moved from an area above freezing to an area below freezing and let stand for awhile. You have lowered the temperature of the water in the bottle...but the air bubble inside the bottle is at pressure (very slight) above surrounding ambient. This is due to the following physics rule:
    (Heated air expands,cooled air contracts).

    The air inside of the bottle was equalized to the original warmer surroundings and moved to where the air outside has contracted due to being cooler.
    The seal of the bottle wont allow the air inside to contract so it will stay at a slightly higher pressure than its new ambient pressure.

    The surface tension of the water is holding back that pressure. When you disturb the tension it allows the water molecules to more or less absorb/overcome some of that pressure (expansion) and it turns the water to ice. If you allowed the bottled water to stay outside long enough the pressure inside of the bottle would equalize to ambient through the microscopic porosity of the plastic and freeze. .....or you could simply take the top off and it would instantly freeze.....happens to my beer all the dang time!!!
    Not sure where you got this from, but water in a vacuum has a HIGHER freezing point. Increasing the pressure will raise the boiling point and LOWER the freezing point.

    How do you figure that the air in the bottle is pressurized? Since the entire bottle is placed into an area that is below freezing, would the air not ALSO cool and contract? How does water "absorb" pressure from the air? Gasses and liquids exhibit exactly the same properties with regard to pressure in a container. When both are in a container, they under the exact same evenly distributed pressure. What the shaking of the bottle can do is to cause the water to "press" against the air bubble and increase the pressure of the air slightly. In doing so, the pressure of the water must decrease slightly to offset this. That slight decrease in pressure may be all it takes to start the crystallization process. And, once it's started, it will continue to completion.
    ---

    2011 JD 2520 with 200cx loader, 61" materials bucket, and Artillian JDQA Pallet Forks (42" forks). 62D MMM, ballast box, turfs, and loaded rears.

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    rgd
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    Quote Originally Posted by meburdick View Post
    Not sure where you got this from, but water in a vacuum has a HIGHER freezing point.Increasing the pressure will raise the boiling point and LOWER the freezing point.

    How do you figure that the air in the bottle is pressurized? Since the entire bottle is placed into an area that is below freezing, would the air not ALSO cool and contract? How does water "absorb" pressure from the air? Gasses and liquids exhibit exactly the same properties with regard to pressure in a container. When both are in a container, they under the exact same evenly distributed pressure. What the shaking of the bottle can do is to cause the water to "press" against the air bubble and increase the pressure of the air slightly. In doing so, the pressure of the water must decrease slightly to offset this. That slight decrease in pressure may be all it takes to start the crystallization process. And, once it's started, it will continue to completion.
    dangit...it was just a WAG of what was happening inside the bottle and trying to figure it out. But....your right, the water will freeze at a higher temp under lower pressure. You just shot my theory in the butt. So....if you suck the beer out of a bottle fast enough...will it freeze it?
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    Quote Originally Posted by rgd View Post
    dangit...it was just a WAG of what was happening inside the bottle and trying to figure it out. But....your right, the water will freeze at a higher temp under lower pressure. You just shot my theory in the butt. So....if you suck the beer out of a bottle fast enough...will it freeze it?
    Yes. But I think you will be pretty light-headed when you're done.

    ---

    2011 JD 2520 with 200cx loader, 61" materials bucket, and Artillian JDQA Pallet Forks (42" forks). 62D MMM, ballast box, turfs, and loaded rears.

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    Quote Originally Posted by meburdick View Post
    When you leave the water undisturbed in an unopened bottle, all of the surfaces of the water are completely smooth. With no irregularities or existing ice crystals in the water, it tends to resist freezing and becomes "super cooled". Once you disturb the water, there will be imperfections in the water surface that will promote ice crystal growth. Once you have one...

    Notice in the video how the ice formation starts in one place and then seems to "flow"... This is because new ice crystals are forming on existing ones, and that sort of goes "through" the water instead of ice forming randomly.

    The reality is that the water does not actually freeze. When water freezes, the molecule structure changes and it requires additional space. If the water in the bottle actually froze (turned completely to ice) the bottle would "explode" out and bulge. What's really happening inside is that you're getting more of a thick slush than you are ice.
    Wait, Wait, Wait..... I am no scientist, or well... nerd... But I do know that water is H2O. How is H2O more smooth when its sitting in a bottle compared to moving in a bottle? How does the molecular level get imperfections?

    Also, your telling me the water does not freeze? So slush is not ice? I think it has ice in it.

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    I saw a deal on the history channel a while back where they think this phenomena took down an Air France passenger plane !
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