Secondary IV â€¢ 1yr.

I have a hard time understanding how why Â° C is used in the thermal energy equation Q = m * c * delta T. In many chemistry exercises, we have to use Kelvin. Thank you

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Secondary IV â€¢ 1yr.

Explanation from Alloprof

This Explanation was submitted by a member of the Alloprof team.

Hello

Thank you for your question!

A temperature variation can be calculated in Kelvin or in degrees Celsius. To convince yourself of this, let's take for example two temperatures \(T_1\) and \(T_2\) given in Â° C. To convert them to Kelvin, we must add 273.15. The temperature variation \( \triangle T\) therefore gives:

$$ \triangle T = T_1-T_2 $$Â

$$ \triangle T = (T_1+273,15)-(T_2+273,15) $$

By distributing the negative sign in the second part of the equation, we obtain:

$$ \triangle T = T_1\color{red} {+273,15} \color{black} {-T_2} \color{red} {-273,15} $$

We therefore notice that the 273.15 cancel each other out, which amounts to our starting equation.

When the formula includesÂ \( \triangle T\) , you can use either temperatures in Kelvin or in degrees Celsius since we have just shown that:

$$ \triangle T = T_1-T_2 = (T_1+273,15)-(T_2+273,15) $$

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