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Thermal expansion Cubical Expansion:

Thermal expansion is the tendency of matter to change in shape, area, When a body is heated, the volume of the body increases and it is known
and volume in response to a change in temperature. as cubical expansion.
At a given temperature, inter-molecular distances are definite. When a
body is heated it's molecules vibrate more energetically against the The constant gamma characterizes the volume expansion properties of a
action of inter-molecular forces and the displacement of molecules is particular
increased. Since the average distance between the molecules increases, material; it is called the coefficient of volume expansion. The units of
the dimension of the body increases. Consequently body expands. are per K or per c0.
Types of thermal Expansion on solid: For many substances, decreases at low temperatures. Note that
: Linear Expansion the values for liquids are generally much larger than those for solids.

: Superficial Expansion
: Cubical Expansion
Linear Expansion
Linear expansion means change in one dimension (length). Determination Of Coefficient Of Linear Expansion Of A Solid By Pullingers Apparatus

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Expansion of Liquids
The constant which describes the thermal expansion properties of a Liquids do not have a definite shape. They take the shape of the
particular material, is called the coefficient of linear expansion. The container. Thus, we can specify a liquid by its volume. Hence, we can
units of are per K or per c0. speak of volume expansion only for liquids. Expansion of liquids is much
We can understand thermal expansion qualitatively on a molecular basis. greater than that of solids.
Each atom vibrates about its equilibrium position. When the temperature A liquid is heated in a container. Heat flows through the container to the
increases, the energy and amplitude of the vibration also increase. The liquid. Which means that the container expands first, due to which the
interatomic spring forces are not symmetrical about the equilibrium level of the liquid falls. When the liquid gets heated, it expands more and
position; they usually behave like a spring that is easier to stretch than beyond its original level. We cannot observe the intermediate state. We
to compress. As a result, when the can only observe the initial and the final levels. This observed expansion
amplitude of vibration increases, the average distance between atoms of the liquid is known as the apparent expansion of the liquid.
also If we consider the expansion of the container also and measure the total
increases (Fig. 17.9b). As the atoms get farther apart, every dimension expansion in volume of the liquid, then the expansion is termed as the
increases. absolute expansion of the liquid.

Heating an object with a hole:

every linear dimension of an object changes in the same way
when the temperature changes.

Measurement of real Expansivity of liquid.

Superficial expansion
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When a body is heated, the area of the body increases and it is known as
Anomalous Expansion of Water
superficial expansion. A common trend seen in substances through out, is the fact that all
substances expand when they are heated and their density decreases
and vice versa and when you cool something, it contracts and increases in
The units of are per K or per c0. density. This is how substances generally react to heat. Lets now look at
what water does.
If you cool water, it follows the general trend till 4o C. Densityof water
gradually increases as you cool it. When you reach 4oC, its density
reaches a maximum. What water does next will astound you. When you
cool it further to make some ice, ie 0oC, water expands with further drop
in temperature meaning the density of water decreases when you cool it
from 4oC to 0oC. This behaviour is charted in the graph below.
The effect of this expansion of water is that the coolest water is always
present on the surface. Since water at 4oC is the heaviest, this water
settles on the bottom of the water body and the lightest ie the coolest
layer accumulates on the top layer. So in the winter, the top of the water
is always the first to freeze over. Since ice and water both are a bad
conductor of heat, this top layer of ice insulates the rest of the water
body from the cold of the winter,thereby protecting all the life in the
water body. Now you can truly comprehend how essential the anomalous
properties of water are for life.

Thermal stress

Differential expansion:

The difference in expansions of different substances when

they are heated through the same range of temperature is
called the differential expansion.