Characteristics of Solids
Some of the common properties of solids, which distinguish them from other two states of matter, are:
- Solids are rigid and have definite shapes.
- Solids have definite volume irrespective of the size or shape of the container in which they are placed.
- Solids are almost incompressible, having compressibility, which is approximately 106 times more than gases.
- Many solids have a crystalline appearance and have definite pattern of angles and planes.
- Solids diffuse very slowly as compared to liquids and gases. Constituent particles are very closely packed in solids permitting very little space for their movement.
- Solids have a much higher density (mass to volume ratio) than that of gases and liquids.
- Most solids become liquids when heated. Some undergo sublimation on heating. The temperature at which a solid changes into liquid is called the melting point and the process is called as melting. Due to the varying natures of solids their melting temperatures vary considerably.