Behavior of small objects - clarification


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Manya Kidambi 3I
Posts: 31
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:24 am

Behavior of small objects - clarification

Postby Manya Kidambi 3I » Fri Oct 05, 2018 1:04 pm

Can someone explain what Dr. Lavelle meant by one discrete H2O molecule? I understand the concept of the water poured from the bucket, but the other part confused me.

Leela_Mohan3L
Posts: 44
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:26 am

Re: Behavior of small objects - clarification

Postby Leela_Mohan3L » Fri Oct 05, 2018 1:13 pm

If you have water being poured from a bucket with a large opening into a cup that sits on top of a scale, the reading on the scale will gradually increase as the amount of water in the cup increases. However, if you decrease the opening of that bucket so much so that only one molecule of H20 can come out of it at a time, then the reading on the scale will increase in jumps--each jump corresponding to the addition of another water molecule into the cup. Thus, this is not a continuous function.

I hope that made sense!

Erin Nash - 4G
Posts: 29
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:27 am

Re: Behavior of small objects - clarification

Postby Erin Nash - 4G » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:50 pm

From my understanding all that he meant by one discrete H2O was a singular molecule of H2O. However, I was confused on whether or not the flow would be continuous if a single molecule was poured out of and why.

Dhwani Krishnan 1G
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:17 am

Re: Behavior of small objects - clarification

Postby Dhwani Krishnan 1G » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:29 pm

I don't think it would be continuous. Because only 1 molecule is entering at a time, the amount of water is so small that the scale (as Leela said) would have "jumps" as it recalibrates. Another analogy would be when you don't close the sink tap fully, and one droplet at a time comes out -- the flow of water, again, is not continuous.
If the bucket had a large opening, it would be continuous because there is a large amount of water entering the cup at a time.


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