You have two same pots of water. The water in the first pot is at 40°F. The water in the second pot is at 40°C. If we turn on the both pots simultaneously which one will boil faster and why?

1 Answer
Dec 10, 2015

Answer:

Is this question really being asked at A level? If it is, it should not be. Clearly, the pot of water at #40^@##C# will reach the boiling point quicker.

Explanation:

I am old enough to remember the Fahrenheit scale. For some reason the freezing point of water was set at #32^@##F#. Its boiling point was set at #212^@##F# (boiling points and freezing points were #180^@# apart; why this should be important is beyond me!). Clearly the pot at #40^@# #F# is fairly close to the freezing point of water, whereas the one at #40^@# #C# is almost 1/2 way to the boiling point of water (you could wash in this one; you'd complain bitterly if you splashed in the other one).

Of course the States still uses the Fahrenheit scale, and I realize that conversions between the Fahrenheit scale and Celsius scales are important. In the laboratory, however, the use of feet, inches, pounds, degrees Fahrenheit would be very rare.