Why does water expand when it freezes?

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Offline annie123

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Why does water expand when it freezes?
« on: 10/11/2014 00:50:28 »

I understand that when something is deprived of energy its molecules vibrate less and the substance becomes denser so why is water different? Is there any other substance that expands when it freezes?

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Offline chiralSPO

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Re: Why does water expand when it freezes?
« Reply #1 on: 10/11/2014 01:51:02 »
Bismuth also expands when it freezes. In the case of water, the issue is that the most stable crystal structure of ice has more space in it than cold water does.