Why is ocean water sometimes the warmest when the average daily air temperature starts to drop? In this activity, learners explore the differing heat capacities of water and air using real data. They analyze graphs of air and water temperature, create their own graphs of temperature range, describe the difference in the heat capacities of air and water, and explain the practical applications of water’s high heat capacity. Includes background information and suggestions for going further.
Keywords:Informal Education,Geochemical Cycles,specific heat,Oceanography,NSDL,High School,Data Representation,Gases,Ecology, Forestry and Agriculture,NSDL_SetSpec_ncs-NSDL-COLLECTION-000-003-112-056,graphing,Heat and Temperature,Mathematics,Oceans and Water,Social Sciences,Communicating Results,Materials science,Data Collection,oceanography,temperature,Physics,thermal buffer,Data Analysis,Technology and Society,Atmospheric science,Changes of Phase,Liquids,Gathering Data,General science,Impacts of Technology,Number and Operations,oai:nsdl.org:2200/20110926123652928T,heat capacity,Middle School,Formulating Explanations,buoy sensor technology,buffer,Ocean Engineering,Metallurgy and Materials Engineering,water,Weather and Climate,states of matter,Chemistry,data,water temperature,Equations and Inequalities,Heat Transfer,Heat and Thermodynamics,Thermodynamics and Entropy,Technology and the Environment,Fire Protection Engineering,Earth system science,ocean,Engineering,General,Science and society,Physical science,Education,Technology,Geoscience