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Q2. Answer the following.

a) Tabulate the differences in the characteristics of matter.

b) Comment upon the following: rigidity, compressibility, fluidity, filling a gas container, shape, kinetic energy and density.

Answer :

(a) The difference in the characteristics of the three states of matter.






Fixed shape

No Fixed shape

No Fixed shape


Fixed volume

Fixed volume

No Fixed volume

Intermolecular force


Less than solids

Very less

Intermolecular space

Very less

More than solids



Rigid/cannot flow

Can flow/not rigid

Can flow/not rigid




Highly compressible

(b) (i) Rigidity: It is the property of a substance to retain its shape whe an external force is acted upon it.

(ii) Compressibility: When the intermolecular space between the particles of a matter reduces due an external force, this property is known as compressibility. Gases and liqiuds are compressible but not solids.

(iii) Fluidity: The tendency of a particle to flow is called fluidity. Gases and liqiuds can flow but not solids.

(iv) Filling of a gas container: Gases have particles which vibrate in all direction randomly and takes the shape of container in which it is stored.

(v) Shape: It is the definite structure of an object within an external boundary. Solids have definite shape (due to high intermolecular forces) and liquids and gases takes the shape of container in which they are stored.

(vi) Kinetic energy: Energy which is possessed by particles due to their motion is reffered to as kinetic energy. Order of max. kinetic energy in different states are: Solids < Liquids < Gases.

(vi) Density: It is defines as the mass per unit volume of a substance, i.e.,   \( d = \) \( M \over V \)      where, ‘d’ is the density, ‘M’ is the mass and ‘V’ is the volume of the substance.