Why doesn't water bottle freeze when undisturbed? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum

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post #11 of 21 Old 03-08-2012, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by kitten_Val View Post
However! If you try exactly same experiment with glass bottle, the water will freeze, expand, and break the bottle (been there done that). So I'm still not convinced by the explanations.

BTW, it's not a distilled water (based on bottle), it's a spring water that is very far from being distilled. Unless they opened and changed it.
I was coming to the conclusion that if the water doesnt have anything to freeze to, it wont freeze, so when you "disturb" it, the bubbles that you create provide something to freeze onto, but once you stated that it freezes undisturbed when in glass, then that idea no longer works. You have completely stumped me... Unless of course it has something to do with any chemicals in/on the plastic bottle, creating this weird, weird thing. I am going to spend my night researching this...

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post #12 of 21 Old 03-08-2012, 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by OkieGal View Post
Could possibly have something to do with the pressure within the bottle.

But, I'm no physicist.
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This would be my best guess as well. I have had that happen several times with bottles of coke in the freezer in my house. I'll stick a bottle in there to get it cold, then forget about it for a day or two. When I find it again, it's still a liquid until I break the seal and change the pressure inside the bottle, then it crystallizes just like that water did.

So, IMHO, the only logical conclusion is that it has something to do with the pressure.

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post #13 of 21 Old 03-08-2012, 10:37 PM
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I am with you on this one, I think your Dad was referring to the process of supercooling in an environment that isn't conducive to crystallisation thereby preventing the solid-liquid phase:

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Originally Posted by OuttatheBlue View Post
I asked my dad (who's an engineer) because that video freaked me out, haha. He says (and I got confused so this is.... a very loose translation) there needs to be a 'dust' or something to start the crystallization. With bottled water there is no ' dust'. He thought they would have had to open the water bottle to get it frozen, so he doesn't understand how it froze just turning it upside down but just another thought.
And in relation to this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by kitten_Val View Post
However! If you try exactly same experiment with glass bottle, the water will freeze, expand, and break the bottle (been there done that). So I'm still not convinced by the explanations.
I think it does this in plastic and not glass due to the difference in formation of the meniscus (leading edge of water as it is attracted to its container). Simply put, water is more attracted to glass, therefore the meniscus stretches further up the side of the container and makes freezing possible reducing the inner volume of liquid just enough to allow crystallisation. In some plastics, the attraction between water molecules (i.e. The force that keeps them together) is greater than the attraction between the water molecules and the plastic. I think this is also the reason that a change in pressure (i.e. Opening a coke bottle) causes the freezing - the liquid expands and creates more of a meniscus in the lining of the bottle.

Spent a lot of time measuring liquids in the lab. Both plastics AND glass are used for measuring instruments but the plastics must meet certain specifications in order to mimic the surface tension and convex meniscus of glass. I'm not a physicist either, just a nerd thinking out loud heh.

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Last edited by sarahver; 03-08-2012 at 10:45 PM.
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post #14 of 21 Old 03-08-2012, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by sarahver View Post
I think it does this in plastic and not glass due to the difference in formation of the meniscus (leading edge of water as it is attracted to its container). Simply put, water is more attracted to glass, therefore the meniscus stretches further up the side of the container and makes freezing possible reducing the inner volume of liquid just enough to allow crystallisation. In some plastics, the attraction between water molecules (i.e. The force that keeps them together) is greater than the attraction between the water molecules and the plastic. I think this is also the reason that a change in pressure (i.e. Opening a coke bottle) causes the freezing - the liquid expands and creates more of a meniscus in the lining of the bottle.
Ahh, I was asking my brother on why it did it with the glass, and not the plastic, and he said the same thing about water liking glass more... that's so weird...

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post #15 of 21 Old 03-08-2012, 11:31 PM
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Besides having to do with the container, it also has to do with energy. The reason pop freezes when you open it is from the release of pressure and the release of carbonation. When the bottle of water is sitting in the truck, it has little energy in it. When he tips it over, squeezes and taps it, he's creating energy in the water. It takes energy (actually release of energy) to change from liquid to solid.

Another puzzling experiment is to toss two cups off liquid in the air when it's really cold out. One cup is cold and the other is hot. Which do you think would freeze in mid air? The cold one because it's closer to the freezing point already? Nope. The hot one has more energy, the heat, available to make the change. The little heat in the cold one can't release as quick as the hot one, so the hot one freezes faster.

BTW, I'm not a physicist but I did do well in science in high school although it was many years ago.

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post #16 of 21 Old 03-09-2012, 12:28 AM
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All I know is that I put unopened bottles of water (same brand as in the video) in my truck and they FREEZE overnight. Sometimes completely, sometimes partially depending on how cold it was.

I don't shake or turn them upside down, just stick 'em in the cupholders.

I do it on purpose... I like having cold water when cleaning stalls.
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post #17 of 21 Old 03-09-2012, 10:01 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gallop On View Post
I was coming to the conclusion that if the water doesnt have anything to freeze to, it wont freeze, so when you "disturb" it, the bubbles that you create provide something to freeze onto, but once you stated that it freezes undisturbed when in glass, then that idea no longer works. You have completely stumped me... Unless of course it has something to do with any chemicals in/on the plastic bottle, creating this weird, weird thing. I am going to spend my night researching this...
Actually, I can add even more... If you put the plastic bottle in freezer overnight it WILL freeze (I do it all the time during a summer). So how is it different from leaving it outside?

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post #18 of 21 Old 03-09-2012, 11:06 AM
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Happend to me in Austria, to bottles of drinkin gwate routside on the window sill, opened window in am got a clearly liquid bottle, opend the bottle and it instantly froze. Head scratcher for years till I tool AC &R . Pressure moves the freeze and boiling points of liquid up and down. That's why we have AC and freezers.
Just like water boils at 212, if you put a lid on it that is airtight, you can raise the pressure and raise the boiling point. So using a pressure cooker water boils at a higher temperature, the higher the pressure the higher the temp. The reveses is also true, look at a cake mix, notice there are differnt directions fo rhigh altitudes ? That's becasue lower air pressure makes water boil at lower temp so food takes longer to cook.
But it isnt just boiling the whole scale changes.
Water in a bottle placed in below freezing area, the water cools starts to contract. (Water contracts till it actually starts freezing). That contraction causes a vacuum, lowers the pressure and lowers the freeze point. SO now the water can be say 30 degrees and still be liquid. OPen the lid remove the vacuum and the water instantly freezes.
There is a very narrow window of temperatures for this to happen. To cold and the water still freezes even though it is under a slight vacuum, too warm and it wont freeze when opened. I wouldnt imagine you have more than a 1 or 2 degree margin.
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post #19 of 21 Old 03-09-2012, 12:21 PM
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KV, can I commend you on a such thought provoking, fun thread?! You have created them before and they're always good for a read!!

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post #20 of 21 Old 03-12-2012, 02:43 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by sarahver View Post
KV, can I commend you on a such thought provoking, fun thread?! You have created them before and they're always good for a read!!
Haha! Thanks, Sarah! Such threads make us all thinking (which is never a bad thing), me including.

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