Chemical characteristic that helps determine how a substance dissolved in water will interact with and affect its environment; based on the comparative amount of hydrogen ions (H+) and hydroxide ions (OH-) contained in a particular volume of the solution
Number of protons in the nucleus of an atom.
Minute unit made of subatomic particles that is the basic building block of all chemical elements and thus all matter; the smallest unit of an element that can exist and still have the unique characteristics of that element.
Idea that all elements are made up of atoms.
Smallest living unit of an organism.
Interaction between chemicals in which the chemical composition of the elements or compounds involved changes.
Shorthand way to show the number of atoms (or ions) in the basic structural unit of a compound. Ex. FeS4
Interaction between chemicals in which the chemical composition of the elements or compounds involved changes. *aka chemical change
A grouping of genes and associated proteins in plant and animal cells that carry certain types of genetic information.
Combination of atoms, or oppositely charged ions, of two or more elements held together by attractive forces called chemical bonds. Ex. NaCl, CO2, C6H12O6
Factual information collected by scientists.
Forms of kinetic energy traveling as electromagnetic waves. Ex. Radio, micro, infrared, visible, UV, X-ray, gamma
Tiny particle moving around outside the nucleus of an atom.
Chemical, such as H, Fe, Na, O, whose distinctly different atoms serve as the basic building blocks of all matter.
Capacity to do work by performing mechanical, physical, chemical, or electrical tasks or to cause a heat transfer between two objects at different temperatures.
Ability of a form of energy to so useful work. Can be high or low.
Any process that increases or decreases a change to a system. Can be negative or positive.
Occurs when an output of matter, energy, or information is fed back into the system as an input and leads to the changes in that system.
first law of thermodynamics
Whenever energy is converted from one form to another in a physical or chemical change, no energy is created or destroyed, but energy can be changed from one form to another.
Rate of flow of matter, energy, or information through a system. *aka throughput
Products of partial or complete decomposition of plants and animals; occurs as crude oil, coal, natural gas, or heavy oils.
Preliminary scientific data, hypotheses, and models that have not been widely tested and accepted.
Coded units of information about specific traits that are passed from parents to offspring during reproduction. They consist of segments of DNA molecules found in chromosomes.
Total kinetic energy of all randomly moving atoms, ions, or molecules within a given substance, excluding the overall motion of the whole object.
Energy that is concentrated and has great ability to perform useful work. Ex. Coal, oil, sunlight, uranium-235
Matter that is concentrated and contains a high concentration of a useful resource.
All compounds not classified as organic compounds.
Matter, energy, or information entering a system.
Atom or group of atoms with one or more positive or negative electrical charges.
Two or more forms of a chemical element that have the same number of protons but different mass numbers because they have different numbers of neutrons in their nuclei.
Energy that matter has because of its mass and speed, or velocity.
law of conservation of energy
Whenever energy is converted from one form to another in a physical or chemical change, no energy is created or destroyed, but energy can be changed from one form to another; you cannot get more energy out of something than you put in; in terms of energy quantity, you cannot get something for nothing. *aka first law of thermodynamics
law of conservation of matter
In any physical or chemical change, matter is neither created nor destroyed but merely changed from one form to another.
Energy that is dispersed and has little ability to do useful work.
Matter that is dilute or dispersed or contains a low concentration of a useful resource.
Sum of the number of neutrons (n) and the number of protons (p) in the nucleus of an atom. It gives the approximate mass of that atom.
Anything that has mass and takes up space.
Measure of how useful a matter resource is, based on its availability and concentration.
Approximate representation or simulation of a system being studied.
Combination of two or more atoms of the same chemical element or different chemical elements held together by chemical bonds.
negative feedback loop
Feedback loop that causes a system to change in the opposite direction from which it is moving. Ex. House thermostat
Elementary particle in the nuclei of all atoms except for H
Process in which nuclei of certain isotopes spontaneously change, or are forced to change, into one or more different isotopes.
Extremely tiny center of an atom, making up most of the atom's mass.
Compounds containing carbon atoms combined with each other and with atoms of one or more other elements such as hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, etc...
Process of scientists reporting details of the methods and models they used, the results of their experiments, and the reasoning behind their hypotheses for other scientists working in the same field to examine and criticize.
Numeric value that indicated the relative acidity or alkalinity of a substance on a scale of 0-14, with the neutral being 7.
Process that alters one or more physical properties of an element or a compound without changing its chemical composition.
positive feedback loop
Feedback loop that causes a system to change further in the same direction. Ex. Melting polar ice
Energy stored in an object because of its position or the position of its parts.
Positively charged particle in a nuclei of all atoms.
Concepts and ideas that are widely accepted by experts in a particular field of the natural or social sciences.
Attempts to discover order in nature and use that knowledge to make predictions about what is likely to happen in nature.
An educated guess that attempts to explain a scientific law or certain scientific observations.
scientific (natural) law
Description of what scientists find happening in nature repeatedly in the same way, without known exception.
A well-tested and widely accepted scientific hypothesis.
second law of thermodynamic
Whenever energy is converted from one form to another in a physical or chemical change, we end up with lower-quality or less usable energy than we started with.
Set of components that function and interact in some regular and theoretically predictable matter.
Rate of flow of matter, energy, or information through a system.
In a complex system, the period of time between the input of a feedback stimulus and the system's respond to it. Ex. Trees take time to grow in a stripped valley.
Threshold level at which an environmental problem causes a fundamental and irreversible shift in the behavior of a system.