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Author Topic: What happens when you boil an egg?  (Read 9259 times)

Offline J Rahman

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What happens when you boil an egg?
« on: 16/10/2009 05:57:42 »
It's a simple question my father asked me. Before I told him my opinion, I thought of talking with you people. Okay... We know that when heat is transferred to a body, it causes the body, if solid, to melt and if melted, to vaporize. We also know that when further heat is applied to a vaporized (I mean to say gaseous) body, it gets ionized. In simple words, these are states of matter which get changed on application or suction of heat.



Now lets see the egg laid by your hen. When we take the hot egg from below the bird's ass, it's liquid though covered by a solid shell. I'm talking about the liquid yolk. Now according to the rule, if I apply heat to the liquid yolk, it must vaporize to a gaseous form. Okay, lets boil an egg and see if the prophecy is correct. No!!!...what happens is just the opposite to what has been said. The liquid freezes to solid when heat is applied. Why?
« Last Edit: 18/10/2009 11:57:47 by chris »


 

Offline Nizzle

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Re: What happens when you boil an egg?
« Reply #1 on: 16/10/2009 10:36:29 »
Because the 'liquid' is in fact a protein mass.
Unheated, these proteins are folded in specific 3-dimensional structures and are more globulous (ball-like).
However, when heat is applied, these proteins denature and their specific 3D structure is broken, which makes the proteins more strand-like.

Now, looking at the whole yolk, it does not actually go from liquid to solid when heated, it goes from liquid with a reasonably high viscosity to a liquid with an even higher viscosity (so high that it doesn't appear to be liquid anymore). So the state does not change, only the viscosity.

Fun-fact about viscosity: Did you know that one of the liquids with the highest viscosity on earth is glass? Yes, that's right, your windows are in fact liquid.
When you remove a glass from an old building, you're able to measure the thickness, and you'll see that the window is a bit thicker at the bottom, so over the years, the glass has been (minimally) drooping down...
 

Offline Madidus_Scientia

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Re: What happens when you boil an egg?
« Reply #2 on: 16/10/2009 16:03:32 »
Quote
Fun-fact about viscosity: Did you know that one of the liquids with the highest viscosity on earth is glass? Yes, that's right, your windows are in fact liquid.
When you remove a glass from an old building, you're able to measure the thickness, and you'll see that the window is a bit thicker at the bottom, so over the years, the glass has been (minimally) drooping down...

That's actually a bit of a myth, that one. In medieval times the last stage of making a pane of glass was to spin a large flattened section on a disc before cutting it into panes. The sheets were thicker towards the edge and so were usually installed with the heavier side at the bottom. Occasionly panes have been found with the heavy side at the top. There's no empirical research that shows glass flows over time.

And I would also say that a boiled egg is indeed solid rather than a highly viscious liquid. When the proteins are heated they unfold and join with other proteins, forming large chains of interconnected proteins, which may be soft but will not behave like liquid.
« Last Edit: 16/10/2009 16:14:26 by Madidus_Scientia »
 

Offline LeeE

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Re: What happens when you boil an egg?
« Reply #3 on: 16/10/2009 16:32:28 »
It's a simple question my father asked me. Before I told him my opinion, I thought of talking with you people. Okay... We know that when heat is transferred to a body, it causes the body, if solid, to melt and if melted, to vaporize. We also know that when further heat is applied to a vaporized (I mean to say gaseous) body, it gets ionized. In simple words, these are states of matter which get changed on application or suction of heat.

I think you've grossly oversimplified things here and are trying to treat compounds like elements; your issue arises from this oversimplification.  Do you also expect wood to melt when you put it on your fire?  Why does food burn and not melt in the oven when you leave it in there too long?  Even relatively simple compounds will behave differently to elements, dry-ice (CO2) for example, will sublime and not melt.
 

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Re: What happens when you boil an egg?
« Reply #3 on: 16/10/2009 16:32:28 »

 

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