Description

This article argues that it is the formation of bubbles of vapour within the liquid that most clearly differentiates boiling from evaporation although only a minority of chemistry textbooks seems to mention bubble formation in this context. The importance of bubble formation is used to explore a much deeper, albeit a largely qualitative, explanatory basis of a number of interrelated phenomena. These include the fixed boiling point of liquids at a constant external pressure, the effect of pressure changes and of dissolved substances on boiling point, and nucleation, superheating and bump-boiling.

Evaporation
Boiling

More from this issue

In this article we show how similar principles can be used to move a polystyrene ball in a circular path. The intention here is to accelerate a...

Jan 2012
Journal Article

This article outlines the Space Academy programme led by the National Space Centre from 2008 to 2011, with the stated goals of harnessing the...

Jan 2012
Journal Article

This article looks at a selection of resources currently available for use in the teaching of astronomy in UK schools. It is by no means an...

Jan 2012
Journal Article