If you’ve ever walked along a beach on a sunny day and dipped your toes in the water to cool them off after the hot sand, you’ve taken advantage of the specific heat of water.
Despite how it may sound, specific heat doesn’t refer to the exact temperature of something. It’s a larger scientific concept that has to do with the energy it takes to heat a substance up. As you might have noticed from the example, not all substances warm up at the same rate—hence the different temperatures of the sand and water.
Water’s specific heat is one of its most interesting characteristics. In this article, we’ll be covering what specific heat is, what equation you use to find specific heat, and why water’s specific heat is so high.