Learning Objectives

Define, solid, liquid, and gas.Explain differences amongst these three phases of matter.

You are watching: Do solids have a definite shape

Why is the state that water different in every picture?

Why is the state the water different in each picture?

Water deserve to take countless forms. At short temperatures (below 0°C), it is a solid. Once at “normal” temperature (between 0°C and 100°C), the is a liquid. While in ~ temperatures over 100°C, water is a gas (steam).

The state the water is in depends upon the temperature. Each state (solid, liquid, and also gas) has actually its own unique collection of physics properties.

Matter and also Its States

Matter frequently exists in one of three states: solid , liquid , or gas . The state a given substance exhibits is also a physical property. Some substances exist together gases at room temperature (oxygen and carbon dioxide), while others, favor water and mercury metal, exist together liquids. Most steels exist as solids at room temperature. Every substances deserve to exist in any kind of of these three states. In addition to currently in one of the 3 states, matter can likewise undergo a change that state. A readjust of state occurs when matter is convert from one state to one more state for example when a fluid is converted to a gas or a hard is converted to a liquid.

Note: Technically speaking a 4th state the matter referred to as plasma exists, but it does not naturally happen on earth, therefore we will omit it from our research here.


Liquids have actually the following characteristics:

no definite shape (takes the shape of that container)has definite volumeparticles are cost-free to relocate over each other, yet are still attracted to each other

A acquainted liquid is mercury metal. Mercury is one anomaly. It is the only metal we understand of the is liquid at room temperature. Mercury additionally has an capacity to stick to chin (surface tension) – a home all liquids exhibit. Mercury has actually a fairly high surface ar tension, which makes it an extremely unique. Here you watch mercury in its usual liquid form.

Figure 2.6


If us were to heat liquid mercury come its boiling allude of 357°C, and also under the right press conditions, we would notice all particles in the liquid state enter the gas state.


Gases have the complying with characteristics:

no definite shape (takes the form of that is container)no definite volumeparticles move in random movement with small or no attraction to every otherhighly compressibleSolid

Solids are defined by the complying with characteristics:

definite form (rigid)definite volumeparticles vibrate roughly fixed axes

If us were come cool liquid mercury come its freezing suggest of -39°C, and under the right push conditions, us would notice all of the fluid particles would enter the hard state.

The video below mirrors this process.

As you have the right to see in the video, mercury can be solidified once its temperature is lugged to its freezing point. However, as soon as returned to room temperature conditions, mercury does not exist in hard state because that long, and also returns ago to its more common liquid form.

See more: A Catalyst Accelerates A Chemical Reaction Because The, The Effect Of A Catalyst


Three says of matter exist – solid, liquid, and gas.Solids have a definite shape and also volume.Liquids have actually a identify volume, yet take the shape of the container.Gases have actually no definite shape or volume.



Use the web site come answer the complying with questions:


Which product is a gas at room temperature (25°C)?Which material is a solid in ~ room temperature?Which product is a liquid at room temperature?What happens to the movement of the particles together you boost the temperature?What happens to the movement of the particles as you to decrease the temperature?



How countless states of matter are there?What is a solid?What is a liquid?What is a gas?