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Properties and States of Matter

from Kaplan TASC 2017-2018

Matter is anything that has mass and takes up space. Under most conditions, there are three
states of matter, as described below:

Solids have a definite shape and volume because the molecules of which they are made
occupy fixed positions and do not move freely. In some solids, such as minerals, the
molecules form an orderly pattern called a crystal.

Liquids have a definite volume but no definite shape because the molecules in a liquid are
loosely bound and move freely. For this reason, a liquid conforms to the shape of its

Gases have no definite shape or volume. The attraction between the molecules of a gas is
very weak. In consequence, the molecules of a gas are far apart and are always in motion,
colliding with one another and with the sides of the container.

The states of matter can be changed by adding and removing heat energy. When heat is
applied to a solid, it melts. This happens because the motion of the solids molecules increases
until the bonds between them are loosened, allowing them to flow freely. The temperature at
which a solid becomes a liquid is its melting point. When heat is applied to a liquid, it boils and
evaporates, turning into a gas as the motion of its molecules increases. The temperature at
which a liquid becomes a gas is called its boiling point. When heat is removed from a gas, the
motion of its molecules decreases and it turns into a liquid. The temperature at which a gas
becomes a liquid is its condensation point. When heat is removed from a liquid, the motion of
its molecule slows until it solidifies. the temperature at which a liquid becomes a solid is its
freezing point. The temperatures at which a substance changes state are unique properties of
that substance. For example, water boils at 100 degrees C (212 degrees F) and freezes at 0
degrees C (32 degrees F). Water is also the only substance that is found naturally in all three
states on Earth.

1. Which of the following involves removing heat from a gas?

a. crystalizing
b. condensing
c. evaporating
d. boiling

2. Density is the amount of mass in a particular volume of a substance. It can be expressed in

grams per cubic centimeter. The chart shows the densities of some common objects.

Which of the following statement is supported by the information provided?

Substance 3
Density (g/cm )

Lead 11.35
Iron 7.87
Aluminum 2.70

Chloroform 1.49
Ethyl alcohol

Oxygen 0.0013

A. Water is the least dense liquid on earth.

B. Solids are usually denser than liquids and gases.
C. Density increases as the volume of a substance increases.
D. Density decreases as the force of gravity decreases.

1. B. Condensing. Condensing is the only process that needs heat to be taken away in the
2. B. Solids are usually denser. Just look at the numbers, they are bigger for solids than for
gases or liquids.