Do Objects Float Better in Saltwater or Freshwater?


Quick Answer

Objects are more buoyant in saltwater than they are in freshwater because saltwater weighs more than freshwater. The saltwater exerts a greater upward force on the object than freshwater, allowing it to float more easily.

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Full Answer

The ability of objects to float better in saltwater can be attributed to the Archimedes Principle, which states that the upward force on a submerged object is equal to the weight of the water it displaces. Displacing a cubic foot of freshwater results in an upward force of 62.4 pounds, while displacing a cubic foot of saltwater results in an upward force of 64.1 pounds.

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