A crystal or crystalline solid is a solid material whose constituent atoms, molecules, or ions are arranged in an ordered pattern extending in all three spatial dimensions. In addition to their microscopic structure, large crystals are usually identifiable by their macroscopic geometrical shape, consisting of flat faces with specific, characteristic orientations.
The scientific study of crystals and crystal formation is known as crystallography. The process of crystal formation via mechanisms of crystal growth is called crystallization or solidification. The word crystal is derived from the Ancient Greek word κρύσταλλος (krustallos), meaning both “ice” and “rock crystal”, from κρύος (kruos), "icy cold, frost".
Common crystals include snowflakes, diamonds, and table salt; however, most common inorganic solids are polycrystals. Crystals are often symmetrically intergrown to form crystal twins.
Read more about Crystal: Crystal Structure (microscopic), Crystal Faces and Shapes, Polymorphism and Allotropy, Crystallization, Defects, Impurities, and Twinning, Chemical Bonds, Quasicrystals, Special Properties From Anisotropy, Crystallography, Gallery
Other articles related to "crystal, crystals":
... A crystal dendrite is a crystal that develops with a typical multi-branching tree-like form ... Dendritic crystal growth is very common and illustrated by snowflake formation and frost patterns on a window ... Dendritic crystals can form from growth instabilities that occur when the growth rate is limited by the rate of diffusion of solute atoms to the interface ...
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Famous quotes containing the word crystal:
“Comets, importing change of times and states,
Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)
“Opinionated writing is always the most difficult ... simply because it involves retaining in the cold morning-after crystal of the printed word the burning flow of molten feeling.”
—Gavin Lyall (b. 1932)
“In a few days Ill have lived one score and three days in this vale of tears. On I plodalways bored, often drunk, doing no penance for my faultsrather do I become more tolerant of myself from day to day, hardening my crystal heart with blasphemous humor and shunning only toothpicks, pathos, and poverty as being the three unforgivable things in life.”
—F. Scott Fitzgerald (18961940)