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The air we breathe is made up of nitrogen and oxygen gases. The water in a pond is made of a single hydrogen/oxygen molecule. If it wasn't for the surface tension on top of the water, oxygen molecules can enter the water and occupy space next to the hydrogen/oxygen molecules.

My question is this: All things being equal, is oxygen more attracted to water or air?

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At 5 °C, the maximum amount of oxygen dissolved in water is 12.8 ppm[1]. This is much less than the 21% oxygen in the air. It is not the surface tension that limits the amount of oxygen dissolving into the water, but the limited solubility of the oxygen in the water.

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