Water can separate into 2 different liquids

(ORDO NEWS) — The dazzling beauty of a snowflake is a testament to the amazing shapes that water can take at temperatures below freezing.

Under pressure, the elegant dance of the H 2 O molecule bends. into something strange at ultra-low temperatures, actually tying itself in knots so as not to turn into ice.

Researchers from the University of Birmingham in the UK and the University of La Sapienza di Rome in Italy have studied the behavior of molecules in pressurized liquids. water placed under conditions that would normally cause it to crystallize.

Based on a new way of modeling the behavior of water as a suspension of particles, they identified the key features of two distinct liquid states; one is “topologically complex”, connected by a knot similar to a pretzel, the other by a lower density of formation of simpler rings.

“This colloidal model of water is a magnifying glass in molecular water, and allows us to unravel the secrets of water associated with the tale of two liquids,” says University of Birmingham chemist Dwaipayan Chakrabarty.

Theories laid down in the 1990s hinted at the kinds of molecular interactions that can occur when water is supercooled cooling below its typical freezing point without solidifying.

Scientists have been pushing the limits of cooling water for years to keep it from becoming a solid. now, after all, managed to keep it in a chaotic liquid form in the insanely cold -263 degrees Celsius (-441 degrees Fahrenheit) for a split second without it. turning into ice.

As far as progress has been made in demonstrating these states in the laboratory, scientists are still trying to figure out exactly what supercooled liquids look like when they are deprived of heat.

> It is clear that at critical points the competing polar attractions between the water molecules dominate over the thermodynamic buzz of the shaking particles. Molecules have to find another comfortable configuration without an elbow in order to go into a crystalline form.

With so many factors in mind, researchers usually try to simplify what they can and focus on the important variables. In this case, viewing the “lumps” of water as if they were larger particles dissolved in a liquid helps to better understand the transitions from one device to another.

Computer models based on this perspective indicated that thin water is moving apart, and the shape is made up of particles that are closer together in a denser shape.

Interestingly, the shape or topology of molecular interactions in this watery landscape also looked very different, with molecules becoming entangled in complex webs when they are huddled together, or in much simpler forms when they are pulled apart.

“In this paper, we offer for the first time a view of the liquid-liquid phase transition based on the ideas of network entanglement,” says Francesco Sciortino, a condensed matter physicist at Sapienza University in Rome.

“I am confident that this work will inspire new theoretical modeling based on topological concepts.”

This strange space of tangled networks of particles is ripe for oring exploration. Although such knots are not entirely different from long chains of covalently linked molecules, they are transient, replacing members as the fluid medium changes.

Given their intricate interactions, the nature of liquid water in a high-pressure, low-temperature environment must be quite unlike what we find on the surface of the Earth.

Learning more about the topological behavior of not only water under these conditions, but also other fluids can give us insight into the activity of materials in extreme or hard-to-reach environments, such as the depths of distant planets.

“Imagine how wonderful it would be if we could look inside a liquid and watch the dance of water molecules, the way they flicker and how they exchange partners, restructure the network of hydrogen bonds,” says Sciortino.

“Implementation of the colloidal water model we propose can make this dream a reality.”


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