Define Moisture Content

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Moisture content is the amount of water in something.
Moisture content is the amount of water in something. (Image: Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Michael Vroegop)

Moisture content is defined as the percentage of water in a product or object. Moisture in some form and amount is found in almost everything and can have different effects on the object. In some cases, moisture is good, but in others, it can cause problems.

Moisture Content and Soil

Water conducts heat effectively. The moisture content of soil affects its heat conductivity. If the moisture in the soil is high, the conductivity will be greater. Very wet soil will have a conductivity close to the conductivity of water.

Moisture Content and Wood

Wood has a moisture content that depends on the environment, such as the temperature and humidity of the air. When wood does not absorb or lose moisture, it is in a balanced state through a process called EMC, the equilibrium moisture content.

Effects of Moisture

When an object contains moisture, it will be affected by additional weight, differences in conductivity or quality.

Moisture in Grain

When grain absorbs moisture, the percentage of moisture content is given as the weight of the grain when it is dry or when it is wet.

Purpose of Moisture Content

In commercial products, the moisture content is important because it can affect the product's ability to be stored, its integrity, or contamination with organisms that grow in a moist environment such as bacteria or fungus.

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