What is the dielectric constant of water?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

A dielectric is a material that will polarize itself when subjected to an external electric field.  The dielectric material itself is not a true conductor of electricity.  But the partial positive and partial negative charges within the dielectric will orient themselves with the applied electric field.  You may be thinking that water is a good conductor of electricity but remember that only water with ions present conducts electricity.  Deionized water (water with all ions removed) is actually a poor conductor of electricity.  The dielectric constant of pure water at 20 degress C is 80.1.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on

Soaring plane image

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial