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"Role of Water in Living Organisms"
Role of Water in Living Organisms
Novelett Roberts
Water is vital for life, with out water life on earth would cease to exist as every living organism must have water in order to survive. The total amount of water on Earth is fixed, (75% of the earth is covered in water) and most is recycled and re-used. The largest reservoirs are oceans and open seas. Very little is actually contained within living organisms, although water is a major constitute of most life forms. Water is a major component of cells, typically forming between 70 and 95% of the mass of the cell. Therefore humans are made from approximately 80% water by mass as opposed to some soft bodied, aquatic creatures such as jellyfish are made of up to 96% water. Water also provides an environment for organisms to live in. this is why when space probes are dispatched to other planets in search of life they look for the presence of water to determine if life is possible there.

Water itself is a simple chemical compound, each molecule composed of 2 hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom: H O. The hydrogen and oxygen atoms are bonded covalently. Water is not a linear molecule; the two hydrogen atoms form a bond with the oxygen at the angle of 104.5.

Covalent bonds are formed by sharing electrons in the outer orbits of the electron cloud. However, in water the large numbers of protons in the oxygen nucleus have a stronger attraction for these shared electrons than the comparatively tiny hydrogen nuclei. This pulls the electrons slightly closer to the oxygen nucleus and away from the hydrogen so that the oxygen develops a slight negative charge and the hydrogen a slight positive charge. This makes the molecules strongly dipolar.

This charge means that when water molecules are close together the positively charged hydrogen...

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