Physical and Chemical Properties

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Let's take a look at the difference between physical properties and chemical properties.

Physical properties are properties that describe the physical characteristics of a substance and not how the substance behaves chemically. 

A chemical property on the other hand are properties of matter that become evident after a chemical reaction. 

Let's take a look at nine physical properties.  

Luster Is the object shiny or dull? 


Hardness Can the object be scratched?


Ductile Can it be pulled into a wire? 


Malleable Can you bend it? 


Conductive Will heat or electricity move through it? 


Density How heavy is it for its size? Density is a measure of mass divided by volume.


Solubility How easily can it dissolve? 


Melting point
At what temperature will it melt? 

melting point

Boiling point At what temperature will it vaporize? 

boiling point

Now let's compare these with some chemical properties and this is not every a list of every single chemical property but an example of several. 

Flammable How easily will the substance react when exposed to an open flame? 

Radioactive  How the nucleus of the atom is going to change.  

Oxidizer This is a substance that promotes combustion in other materials. An example is when you mix nitric acid with copper and it creates a cool brown gas. 

Corrosive Can the objects rip off electrons from metals. 

Toxic This is a substance that can be poisonous or cause harmful health effects. 

Explosive A substance that contains a great amount of potential energy that can produce an explosion.  

PH This is the potential of hydrogen and it's a measure of how acidic or basic a substance is.

Additional Chemical Properties

Heat of Combustion At what temperature will the object ignite.

Reactivity  A measure of how much a substance reacts when it is mixed with another substance.

Enthalpy Is the sum of the objects internal energy.

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