Solid is one of the four fundamental states of matter (the others being liquid, gas, and plasma). It is characterized by structural rigidity and resistance to changes of shape or volume. Unlike a liquid, a solid object does not flow to take on the shape of its container, nor does it expand to fill the entire volume available to it like a gas does. The atoms in a solid are tightly bound to each other, either in a regular geometric lattice (crystalline solids, which include metals and ordinary water ice) or irregularly (an amorphous solid such as common window glass).
The branch of physics that deals with solids is called solid-state physics, and is the main branch of condensed matter physics (which also includes liquids). Materials science is primarily concerned with the physical and chemical properties of solids. Solid-state chemistry is especially concerned with the synthesis of novel materials, as well as the science of identification and chemical composition.
Famous quotes containing the word solid:
“Manuel showed her his open hand: Look at this finger, how meager it seems, and this one even weaker, and this other one no stronger, and this one all by himself and on his own.
Then he made a fist: But now, is it strong enough, big enough, solid enough? It seems so doesnt it?”
—Jacques Roumain (19071945)
“Now, we deny not, but that politicians may sometimes abuse religion, and make it serve for the promoting of their own private interests and designs; which yet they could not do so well neither, were the thing itself a mere cheat and figment of their own, and had no reality at all in nature, nor anything solid at the bottom of it.”
—Ralph J. Cudworth (16171688)
“I stand in awe of my body, this matter to which I am bound has become so strange to me. I fear not spirits, ghosts, of which I am one,that my body might,but I fear bodies, I tremble to meet them. What is this Titan that has possession of me? Talk of mysteries! Think of our life in nature,daily to be shown matter, to come in contact with it,rocks, trees, wind on our cheeks! the solid earth! the actual world! the common sense! Contact! Contact! Who are we? where are we?”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)