What is Evaporation?

Evaporation is the process in which a liquid state of matter is converted into a gaseous state of matter. As temperature increases the rate of evaporation increases.Examples of evaporation:

  • Crystallization
  • Drying of clothes

It is an essential part of the water cycle. The sun drives the evaporation of water from oceans, lakes, moisture in the soil, and other sources of water. In hydrology, evaporation, and transpiration which involves evaporation within plant stomata) are collectively termed evapotranspiration. Vaporization of water occurs when the surface of the liquid is exposed, allowing molecules to escape and form water vapor; this vapor can then rise and form clouds. With sufficient energy, the liquid will turn into vapor.
In the water cycle, It occurs when sunlight warms the surface of the water. The heat from the sun makes the water molecules move faster and faster until they move so fast they escape as a gas. Once evaporated, a molecule of water vapor spends about ten days in the air. As water vapor rises higher in the atmosphere, it begins to cool back down. When it is cool enough, the water vapor condenses and returns to liquid water. These water droplets eventually gather to form clouds and precipitation.
Evaporation from the oceans is vital to the production of freshwater. Because more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered by oceans, they are the major source of water in the atmosphere. When that water evaporates, the salt is left behind. The fresh-water vapor then condenses into clouds, many of which drift over land. Precipitation from those clouds fills lakes, rivers, and streams with fresh water.

Factors Affect the Evaporation

  • Temperature: When temperature increases, the rate of vaporization also increases. Temperature and rate of vaporation are proportional to each other.
  • Surface area: As the surface area increases, the rate of vaporization increases. The surface area and rate of evaporation are proportional to each other.
  • Humidity
  • Wind speed

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