Just about everyone at one time or another has been burned by hot water or steam.?
Assume that water and steam, initially at 100∘C, are cooled down to skin temperature, 34∘C, when they come in contact with your skin. Assume that the steam condenses extremely fast. We will further assume a constant specific heat capacity c=4190J/(kg⋅K) for both liquid water and steam.
Under these conditions, which of the following statements is true?
a. Steam burns the skin worse than hot water because the thermal conductivity of steam is much higher than that of liquid water.
b. Steam burns the skin worse than hot water because the latent heat of vaporization is released as well.
c. Hot water burns the skin worse than steam because the thermal conductivity of hot water is much higher than that of steam.
d. Hot water and steam both burn skin about equally badly.