What is matter? Subject: Concept, Properties and Composition

What is matter?

We explain what matter is and what the properties of an object are. In addition, what matter is composed of.

Matter is all that constitutes objective material reality.What is matter

Matter is defined as everything that has a spatial location, with a certain amount of energy and that is subject to changes in time and interactions with measurement objects. We are talking about any type of mass entity that (at the microscopic level) occupies a region of space-time and usually behaves like a wave.

Matter, in physics and philosophy, refers to everything that constitutes objective material reality. By objective we understand a matter that can be perceived (just as I perceive a dog, a plant or a table).

It is considered that matter is what makes up the sensitive part of perceptible (or detectable) objects by physical means, since we speak of everything that occupies a place in space, can be felt, measured and touched, for example.

Matter is everywhere, and in any physical state. There’s matter in the air that you breathe as well as in a glass of water. Everything we see, feel and touch is matter, which is a fundamental element for the development of life on the planet.

  • States of matter. Matter can be found in three different physical states: solid (like a block of ice), liquid (like a glass of water) or gaseous (like the carbon dioxide we release when we breathe).
  • Changes of state. Matter can pass from solid to liquid by melting, from liquid to solid by solidification, from liquid to gas by evaporation, from liquid to gas by condensation and finally, from solid to gas by sublimation and from gas to solid by reverse sublimation.

Properties of matter

The physical properties are, for example, color, texture and flavor, among others.

Matter has particular characteristics that distinguish substances from each other. To be able to classify these properties in two groups:

Physical properties. They depend mainly on the substance itself (such as color, odor, texture or taste among others). In turn, physical properties are divided into two groups:

  • Extensive physical properties. They are those that refer to the amount of matter present (mass, volume, length).
  • Intensive physical properties. They are those that depend only on the material and not on the quantity of it, or on the volume that it occupies (for example, a liter of oil has the same density that one hundred liters of oil).

Chemical properties. These are those that depend on the behaviour of the material against other substances (such as the oxidation of a nail).

What does matter consist of?

An atom is the smallest amount of a chemical element.

Matter is composed of atoms that are very small particles that in turn are composed of even smaller particles called subatomic particles, which are grouped together to make up the different types of objects.

What do we call an atom? An atom is the smallest amount of a chemical element that has its own existence and can be associated with other atoms to enter into combination.

It is made up of a nucleus with protons (positive charges) and neutrons (neutral charges) and a crust charged with electrons (negative charges).

An atom can be stable or not, we affirm that it is stable if the number of protons of the nucleus is equivalent to the electrons present in the cortex, if so, we are in the presence of an atom in an electrically neutral state.

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