There are various reasons one might want to understand the nature of a water molecule. For one, we are mostly made of water and so just as one would want to understand the nature of their own DNA it also makes since to understand the workings of a water molecule. Another reason is that water is everywhere. After molecular hydrogen and carbon monoxide, water is the most abundant molecule in the universe and it is also the most abundant solid substance in space.
One more reason you may want to understand water molecules is that scientists are beginning to see that in the quest for purifying water that the structure of water can be just as important as the chemical components of the water. What this means is that water filters, as they are today, aren’t usually enough to really purify water because in order to truly clean the structure of our tap water you also need to employ some sort of water structuring device such as a Wu Wei Structured Water Unit.
The Polarity of Water
The hydrogen atoms are bonded to the oxygen by sharing a pair of electrons. Because oxygen also holds two unshared pairs of electrons there are a total of 4 pairs of electrons that surround the oxygen atom.
Because oxygen has a higher electonegativity than hydrogen, the side of the molecule with oxygen atom has a partial negative charge. The charge difference distinguishes the oxygen as a dipole meaning two poles. So the oxygen end is partially negative while the hydrogen end is partially positive and this causes the water molecules to be attracted to each other. Such attraction helps to create hydrogen bonding and explains aspects of water, like solvent action. Because of the polarity of water, due to it’s uneven distribution of electron density, water has the ability to dissolve ions and other molecules.
A water molecule can accept two hydrogen atoms and donate two which means it can form up to four hydrogen bonds. Compared to the covalent bonds within the water molecule itself hydrogen bonding is a relatively weak attraction but it is responsible for a number of water’s properties. For instance, water has a high melting and boiling point temperature because more energy is required to break the hydrogen bonds between molecules. There is also a sufficient amount of bonding between water molecules to give liquid water a large specific heat capacity making it a good heat storage medium such as coolant and a good heat shield. Other unique properties are a result of hydrogen bonds. For example, because hydrogen bonds hold water molecules further apart in a solid than in a liquid state, where there is one less hydrogen bond per molecule, ice can float.
Furthermore, because of hydrogen bonds there is an exclusion of compounds containing carbon and hydrogen (nonpolar compounds) and this property of water is called the hydrophobic effect. The formation of cell membranes depends upon the hydrophobic effect. Water basically squeezes the nonpolar molecules together.
Water also has other properties that are only now beginning to be understood. One of these is ‘memory’. Water seems to be able to retain some properties of materials that were once dissolved in it, even after they have been mostly removed. This is how homeopathic medicine works. Colloidal Silver Solution is a prime example. It is one of the most effective anti-biotics available, so much so that it is used by the US Military and Diplomatic personnel when they go overseas. Nevertheless, as with all other homeopathic remedies, it is 99.9999% water. In fact, the more dilute a solution is, the more powerful its effect. Another good example is structured water. This simulates the way nature ‘energizes’ water and makes it easier for our bodies to use. Research is currently under way to discover how we can use these properties better. There are already products on the market that utilize these properties.
The basic structure of water makes it truly a marvel of nature, and the reason why Earth, of all the other planets we know of, has life as we know it. Give it a ponder as you drink your next gulp of water molecules.
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