Saturday, April 28, 2012

There is something about Oxygen

When water gets frozen...

We have seen that oxygen is created deep inside massive stars in the set of highly ordered fusion reactions. This was my gut feeling already before I learned about this order when I was looking at those enormous furnaces in space, stars burning at such high temperatures and with such violent explosive reactions going on - our God likes order and there must be order in that fierce reactor - and so there is.

If it was all building up material from the fundamental particles it would already be a masterpiece of planning, design, thinking, creativity ... just awesome. Our cosmos, I mean.

But take this oxygen, for example.

Science has found out that most of the mass of the matter in the universe consists of these three, hydrogen, helium and oxygen (not talking about dark matter). So oxygen is everywhere and also of our bodies about 50% is oxygen. This element is the substance of life as we know it. (Another argument that life is probably flourishing all over the universe...)

But there is something about oxygen.

Something that is not so simple to explain as a natural chain of reactions, events leading to events, lego put over lego. Something quit exceptional like in that Mary in that movie...

If we are just reading boring chemistry or studying the physical properties it may pass our attention among the myriad of facts science has learned about oxygen.

But when we are looking at the marvels of creation we pay attention to exceptions in Nature that are somehow out of the regular patterns and yet highly significant.

So we gasp breath of air when we learn the following:

Oxygen solubility and temperature
The increased solubility of O2 at lower temperatures has important implications for ocean life, as polar oceans support a much higher density of life due to their higher oxygen content.

(From The Chemistry and Fertility of Sea Waters by H.W. Harvey, 1955, citing C.J.J. Fox, "On the coefficients of absorption of atmospheric gases in sea water", Publ. Circ. Cons. Explor. Mer, no. 41, 1907. Harvey however notes that according to later articles in Nature the values appear to be about 3% too high.)

This property of oxygen is truly remarkable!

Wikipedia gives accurate details about this wonder of Nature:
Oxygen is more soluble in water than nitrogen is; water contains approximately 1 molecule of O2 for every 2 molecules of N2, compared to an atmospheric ratio of approximately 1:4.

The solubility of oxygen in water is temperature-dependent, and about twice as much (14.6 mg·L−1) dissolves at 0 °C than at 20 °C (7.6 mg·L−1).

At 25 °C and 1 standard atmosphere (101.3 kPa) of air, freshwater contains about 6.04 milliliters (mL) of oxygen per liter, whereas seawater contains about 4.95 mL per liter.

At 5 °C the solubility increases to 9.0 mL (50% more than at 25 °C) per liter for water and 7.2 mL (45% more) per liter for sea water.

Scientist, please explain!
Although these blogs are about theology I turn all the time to the scientists in order to learn more about creation. That's how it is - they know, because they have studied Nature as it is.

So how come that oxygen has this enormously important property that the solubility increases when temperatures get lower?

I stop this discussion here - there must be a perfectly good scientific explanation on molecular and nuclear chemistry to this strange behaviour and there probably is.

Continued First of May, 2012... well, there probably will be but at the moment there are more questions than answers. A very nice explanation by a young scientist about Higgs boson and other things why matter has properties..  here

Fine tuning of creation
My point is that our Creator is free to make exceptions to the systems He has made when necessary.

We could call this kind of activity "the fine tuning of the natural laws" to fit some specific purpose, like maintaining life on Earth.

And God saw every thing that He had made, and behold, it was very good. 
Genesis 1:31

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