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Melting Temperature (Solidus)

A single, sharp melting point only really applies to very pure substances. Most materials enter a semi-molten transitional state at one temperature (solidus), and become fully liquid at another (liquidus).

Melting data is primarily useful for fabrication considerations, since mechanical properties tend to strongly deteriorate at a much lower temperature than the solidus. In metals, this deterioration is reversible on cooling, unless the material has been heat-treated or work hardened, in which case some degree of annealing is likely to have occurred.

The phenomenon of melting is generally a little too obvious to need standardized tests. However, some standards exist to cover a few challenging cases. For example, ASTM D7138 for synthetic fibers, and ASTM F766 for waxes.

Material Properties Explained

Material Properties Explained is a handbook published by It is a concise encyclopedia of engineering material properties. It is not tied to the material properties database, and covers a far larger number of properties than those used on the website. Subject matter includes:

  • Differences in definition and testing between types of materials.
  • Common testing variations and their significance.
  • What additional information is required to correctly interpret a value.
  • Any equations to calculate or estimate property values.
  • Synonyms and related terms.
  • Relevant international testing standards, including both ASTM and ISO.

To purchase a digital (PDF) copy: Material Properties Explained.

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