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ALL MOLECULAR GRAPHICS: WATER: water molecules (H2O) evaporating from the sea

water molecules above the ocean illustrating evaporation

Water image # 4: picture showing water molecules evaporating from the sea.

This image is 500 x 500 pixels; the original image is 4096 x 4096 pixels.

Water: is a highly polarised molecule which leads to hydrogen bonding among the molecules. This cohesiveness keeps water a liquid under standard conditions. However, water molecules still escape the liquid phase and enter the gas phase in a process called evaporation. When water boils this rapid evaporation is called steaming. The evaporation of water from the ocean is driven by the sun and the resultant water vapour becomes evident as clouds. These release their water as rain and so a constant cycle is maintained, driven by solar energy.

In the molecules above, the central oxygen atom (red) is pictured as a sphere drawn at the scale of its covalent radius just touching two hydrogen atoms (green) drawn at the scale of their covalent radii. The transparent spheres represent the "surfaces" of each molecule and are created from the van der Waals radii of the constituent atoms.

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