Hot water meets cold air

Science at home

Even if school is out, you can still have a little fun with science. We have all seen what happens when you throw hot water into very cold air, but what happens when the water is cold? My son took a little time today to find out. He put one cup of water in Pyrex measuring cup and heated it in the microwave for 2 minutes. Carefully he took the glass out of the microwave and went outside. Note he did not stay outside unbundled beyond the amount of time it took to throw the water in the air. As you see once it was thrown in the air, it turned to steam.
He then took one cup of cold water from the tap and placed it into the Pyrex measuring cup. Before he threw it in the air, he predicted that it would be a big chunk of ice before it hit the ground. Much to his surprise, when he threw the cold water in the air, it did not freeze. We did the experiment twice to make sure we got the same results, and in each trial we got the same results.
So for the kids reading this, why did the hot water turn into steam as it hit the air? Why did the cold water not turn into a chunk of ice before it hit the ground? Write your answers below. Remember if you perform this experiment please have the permission of your parents, be very careful when handling the hot water, and always bundle up in the cold

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Carol Hachlinski says ... on Monday, Jan 19 at 1:48 PM

It seems that the air turns into steam when you throw hot water into cold air. However, it has been reported by some that instead of turning into steam and vaporizing, the water actually turns into snow crystals. What causes the crystals to form?

Anonymous says ... on Sunday, Jan 18 at 3:31 PM

Cause god wanted it that way?

Greg says ... on Friday, Jan 16 at 9:56 AM

I'll give you a hint it has to do with the vapor pressure of water at different temperatures

Axle says ... on Thursday, Jan 15 at 8:29 PM

Maybe Al Gore could answer that one?

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