Water: Lifeblood of the Earth and our most precious resource covers 71% of the surface. Out of the 326 million cubic miles of water on the planet, 97% of it is found in the oceans with only a mere .5% available as fresh water! The remaining 2.5% of fresh water is locked up in glaciers, polar ice caps, atmosphere, and soil, highly polluted, or lies too far under the earth’s surface to be extracted at an affordable cost. Water is fascinating, just look for yourself!
- Water is unique in that it is the only natural substance that is found in all three physical states—liquid, solid, and gas—at the temperatures normally found on Earth.
- Water is unusual in that the solid form, ice, is less dense than the liquid form, which is why ice floats.
- Water is called the “universal solvent” because it dissolves more substances than any other liquid. This means that wherever water goes, either through the ground or through our bodies, it takes along valuable chemicals, minerals, and nutrients.
- Water has a high heat index—it absorbs a lot of heat before it begins to get hot. This is why water is valuable to industries and in your car’s radiator as a coolant. The high heat index of water also helps regulate the rate at which air changes temperature, which is why the temperature change between seasons is gradual rather than sudden, especially near the oceans.
- Water has a very high surface tension. In other words, water is sticky and elastic, and tends to clump together in drops rather than spread out in a thin film, like rubbing alcohol. Surface tension is responsible for capillary action, which allows water (and its dissolved substances) to move through the roots of plants and through the tiny blood vessels in our bodies.
- The density of water means that sound moves through it long distances (ask a whale!). In sea water at 30°C, sound has a velocity of 1,545 meters per second (about 3,500 miles per hour).
- Air pressure affects the boiling point of water, which is why it takes longer to boil an egg at Denver, Colorado than at the beach. The higher the altitude, the lower the air pressure, the lower the boiling point of water, and thus, the longer time to hard-boil an egg. At sea level water boils at 212°F (100°C), while at 5,000 feet, water boils at 202.9°F (94.9 °C).
We at BSI take clean water seriously and have revolutionized backflow management to streamline the overall process. To learn more about our process, click here!