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Can I say that, matter generally when cooled decreases in volume because, when it is cooled,i.e., we lower the temperature of the surroundings, then the avg. energy of our sample will be higher than the surroundings and hence, the molecules coming out will be more, therefore, the volume decreases...And when equilibrium is reached the molecules coming out and going in will be same and that's when they are at the same temperature.

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  • $\begingroup$ What about water? $\endgroup$ – pfnuesel Feb 26 '14 at 11:54
  • $\begingroup$ That's why I said 'generally', water increases in volume when cooled from 4C to OC because of its Structure... $\endgroup$ – Maneesh Dev Feb 26 '14 at 11:58
  • $\begingroup$ Sure, with a zillion exceptions: water, a number of rubbery things which expand as they cool, and so on. $\endgroup$ – Carl Witthoft Feb 26 '14 at 12:44
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No, you should not refer to molecules coming out or going in, unless there is more than one phase (such as in evaporation, sublimation, condensation, etc.). The volume decreases (or increases) because the space between molecules or atoms decreases (or increases), even though the number of molecules or atoms is constant.

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