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WHAT IS SUBLIME?

Words are so magic! The Latin sublimare ("sub-li-MAH-ray")
means "to raise" - sublimis ("sub-LEEM-miss") is "uplifted."
When something is really grand, we say it is "sublime." The
magic part is that the verb "sublimate" (SUB-leem-mate) means
"to cause a solid or a gas to change state without becoming
a liquid." Read on...

Thoroughly wet a cloth on a sunny day when the temperature
outside is below freezing. Suspend the cloth, and observe it
every half hour until the cloth is frozen stiff.

Those of us who live in the Central Valley of California will
be hard put to do this. Maybe your ski vacation could be
interrupted long enough to perform this experiment!

After several hours, bring the cloth indoors and examine it.
You will find that the cloth is dry.

The time required for the frozen water to leave the cloth
depends upon the relative humidity of the air, the wind, and
the temperature.

The water in the cloth actually sublimes from a solid state
to a gaseous state. Isn't that sublime?


 
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