Principles of Solidification
Solidification, in the sense used in this context, is the process by which a liquid is transformed into a crystalline solid. In crystal growth the solid that forms first is solvent rich as distinct from crystallisation, in which the crystals that are formed are solute rich. It is not always possible to make a clear distinction. Solidification is important as the process employed in the widely used process of casting, in all its forms from large ingots of steel to small crystals of silicon. While in principle it would seem simple to convert a homogeneous liquid into an equally homogeneous perfect crystal, this is extremely difficult, if not impossible to achieve in practice. Thorough understanding requires that the process be studied at various levels, which can be conveniently described as the angstrom level, the micron level and the centimetre level.
KeywordsCritical Radius Interfacial Free Energy Accommodation Coefficient Isothermal Surface Rough Interface
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