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Difference Between Crystalline Solid and Amorphous Solid for JEE Main 2024

Last updated date: 22nd Mar 2024
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What is crystalline solid and amorphous solid: Introduction

Crystalline solids and amorphous solids are two distinct forms of solids with different structural arrangements and physical properties. Understanding the difference between these two types of solids is essential to grasp the fundamental nature of matter. In this article, we will explore the dissimilarities between crystalline and amorphous solids and the Characteristics of crystalline solids and amorphous solids.


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Difference Between Crystalline Solid And Amorphous Solid

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When two solids are in close contact with one another and are separated by a few atomic layers, the properties of the solid interface are said to be significantly different from those of the bulk material it separates. Solids can be divided into the following groups based on their crystal structures:

  1. Amorphous solids

  2. Crystalline solids

However, molecular, ionic, metallic, and covalent solids are additional categories for crystalline solids. This article offers a succinct overview of solids categorization.

Explain Crystalline Solid And Amorphous Solid:

Amorphous solids are those that lack the general organization of a crystal lattice or in which the particles are not organized in any particular order.

  • When the word "amorphous" is broken down into its basic Greek roots, "without form" is a good general translation. Amorphous solids make up many polymers. In addition, glass, gels, and nanostructured materials are examples of such solids.

  • An atomic arrangement with infinite translational symmetry in all three dimensions is what is meant by the definition of an ideal crystal, but an ideal amorphous solid (a-solid) cannot have such a clear definition.

Examples of Amorphous Solids:

Glasses, ceramics, gels, polymers, quickly quenched melts, and thin-film systems formed at low temperatures on a substrate are examples of amorphous solids. Amorphous material research is one of the most active fields of study. Despite significant advancement in recent years, we still have a long way to go in comprehending amorphous materials. The lack of periodicity-related simplifications is the cause.

However, the fundamental elements of the electronic structure, and consequently also the macroscopic properties, are governed by short-range order when the properties of materials in crystalline and an amorphous state are compared. Therefore, these characteristics hold true for both crystalline and amorphous substances.

Properties of Amorphous Solids:

  1. Lack of long-range order: The constituent particles of an amorphous solid are not arranged in a long-range order. They might have a few discrete areas of organized arrangement, though. Crystallites are the crystalline components of an amorphous material.

  2. No pronounced melting point: Amorphous solids have a variety of melting points rather than a distinct melting point. For instance, glass heated to a certain temperature softens and ultimately melts. As a result, glass can be blown or moulded into a variety of shapes. Amorphous solids lack the fusion heat that is typical of them.

  3. Transformation into crystal form: At a certain temperature, annealing transforms an amorphous solid into a crystalline one. Glass artifacts from antiquity appear milky because of some crystallization that has taken place, which is why.

Explain Crystalline solids:

Crystalline solids are described as having highly organized arrangements of their atoms, ions, and molecules in tiny structures.

A crystal lattice made up of these organized tiny structures explains the solid's structure at any given position. Diamond, sodium nitrate, and salt (sodium chloride) are a few examples of crystalline solids.

Examples of Crystalline solids:

Quartz, calcite, sugar, mica, diamonds, snowflakes, rock, calcium fluoride, silicon dioxide, and alum are examples of crystalline solids. These organized microscopic structures make up a crystal lattice, which explains the structure of the solid at any particular location. Crystalline solids include things like sodium nitrate, diamond, and table salt (sodium chloride).

Types of Crystalline Solids:

  • Solids with molecules that are kept together by dipole-dipole interactions or London dispersion forces are referred to as molecular crystalline solids. These include things like sugar, table salt, and diamonds.

  • Ions are kept together by electrostatic forces to form solids known as ionic crystals. These include substances like magnesium oxide (MgO) and sodium chloride (NaCl).

Properties of Crystalline Solids:

  1. Crystalline solids are distinct because of their highly organised, repeating structure. They are highly robust and challenging to break because of their repeating structure, which also gives them their distinctive shape.

  2. A crystal lattice is a three-dimensional geometric structure that describes how the atoms are grouped in a crystalline material. The rigidity of the solid is provided by this lattice, which is extraordinarily strong.

  3. The melting point of crystalline solids is among their most significant characteristics. The temperature at which a solid transforms into a liquid is known as the melting point.

  4. The harder it is to melt the solid, the higher its melting point. Generally speaking, crystalline solids have exceptionally high melting points due to their robust, organized structure. 

Crystalline solid and amorphous solid difference:

To make you understand how crystalline and amorphous solids are different from each other, here are the some of the major differences between crystalline solid and amorphous solid:







True Solids

Solids or super-cooled liquids



Particles are arranged in a repeating pattern. They have a regular and ordered arrangement resulting in a definite shape.

Particles are arranged randomly. They do not have an ordered arrangement resulting in irregular shapes


Melting points

They have a sharp melting point

They do not have sharp melting points. The solid tends to soften gradually over a temperature range


Heat of Fusion

They have a definite heat of fusion.

They do not have definite heat of fusion



Anisotropic in nature. i.e., the magnitude of physical properties (such as refractive index, electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity etc.) is different along with different directions of the crystal.

Isotropic in nature. i.e., the magnitude of the physical properties is the same along with all directions of the solid.


Cleavage Property

When cutting with a sharp edge, the two new halves will have smooth surfaces

When cutting with a sharp edge, the two resulting halves will have irregular surfaces



They are rigid solids and applying mild forces will not distort its shape.

They are not rigid, so mild effects may change the shape.


Crystalline and amorphous solids differ significantly in their structural arrangements and physical properties. Crystalline solids exhibit a highly ordered arrangement with distinct melting points, sharp boundaries, anisotropic properties, and the ability to exhibit X-ray diffraction. On the other hand, amorphous solids lack long-range order, do not possess a precise melting point, have isotropic properties, and do not show X-ray diffraction. Understanding these disparities is crucial to various fields of science and engineering, as it enables us to comprehend the behavior and properties of different materials.

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FAQs on Difference Between Crystalline Solid and Amorphous Solid for JEE Main 2024

1. What is meant by crystalline solids?

A crystal lattice, which can stretch in any direction, is formed by atoms, ions, and molecules grouped in a strongly ordered microscopic arrangement in repeating and consistent three-dimensional formations.

2. What are the seven types of crystals?

Triclinic, monoclinic, orthorhombic, tetragonal, trigonal, hexagonal, and cubic crystal formations are also available. Groupings of lattices and lines identify a family of crystals.

3. What is an example of an amorphous solid?

Natural and artificial materials can be found in amorphous solids. The most frequently used illustration of an amorphous solid is glass. However, all solid subsets share amorphous solids. Thin-film lubricants, metallic lenses, polymers, and gels are further sources.

4. How do amorphous solids come into existence?

An amorphous solid molecule, atoms, or ions may gradually reorganize itself into a more highly organized crystalline form if kept over extended periods of time at a temperature slightly below its melting point. Amorphous solids lack clear, well-defined melting points, while crystals do.

5. Is wood crystalline or amorphous?

Materials such as stone, wood, paper, and linen can form crystals. These solids are made of atoms organized in a specific way. As crystalline crystals are heated, a sudden and transparent transition from solid to liquid, known as melting, occurs. Rubber, glass, and sulphur make up amorphous solids.