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Conservation Definition

Conservation means to save or keep the same. All matter is conserved, it just changes form.

View Lesson on Conservation of Matter
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Conservation of Matter

Fun Facts

  • Matter is conserved when boiling water appears to vanish - it just changes into water vapor that we cannot see.
  • If matter turns into a gas you can't see with your naked eye, as with burning a candle, it is still conserved.
  • Dry ice turning into gas without weight loss illustrates conservation in a sealed system.

Why Do We Need To Know About Conservation

Learning about how matter doesn’t disappear but changes forms helps you understand how things transform. For example, in cooking, knowing how sugar mixes with water is important for making recipes. This shows how this idea is used in making food.

This idea is also important in chemical engineering for separating and getting back materials. People working in chemistry, shipping, and car engineering all use this knowledge. This shows how conservation is useful for many jobs and in everyday life.

Frequently Asked Questions

When the team mix 25 grams of sugar into 150 grams of water, the sugar seems to disappear! Where does it go?
The sugar dissolves into the water. It is still there, it simply changes into a form we can't see.
What evidence tells us that the sugar is still there, even though we can’t see it?
The sugar water weights 175 grams which is the same as all the sugar (25g) plus all the water (150g). This is evidence that the sugar is still there even though we can’t see it.
When Dr. Jeff boils the sugar water, what happens?
As the water is heated it changes forms from liquid to gas. The sugar is left behind as a solid, providing us with evidence that it was in there the whole time.
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