Solidification of Metals

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    THE first Report to the Beilby Prize Committee of the Institute of Metals on “The Solidification of Metals from the Liquid State,” by Dr. C. H. Desch, is published in the current number of the Journal of the Institute. It consists of a very interesting and comprehensive review of the literature bearing on the subject, in conformity with the first part of the scheme of Dr. Beilby, which included both the preparation of a summary of the existing knowledge on the subject of the solidification of metals and an experimental investigation of certain parts of the subject. The report deals first with the cellular structure of metals, and it is shown that more than one apparently cellular structure may be detected in metals under suitable conditions. The crystallisation of metals is next approached, and the formation of crystallites or crystal skeletons. Attention is very rightly directed to the few opportunities which occur for the gonio-metrical and physical study of isolated crystals of metals. For there can be no doubt that much valuable information would be obtained from such an investigation, which would also be of particular value as throwing light on the phenomenon of hardness. In a solidifying metal crystallites start at numerous independent centres, and each grows as a crystal until interfered with by its neighbours, which interference gives rise to the so-called “allotriomorphic” formations of irregularly bounded crystals.

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    Solidification of Metals . Nature 93, 674 (1914) doi:10.1038/093674a0

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