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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: June 2019

Chapter 2 - Crystals and Crystal Growth

Summary

Crystallization can be regarded as a self-assembly process in which randomly organized molecules in a fluid come together to form an ordered three-dimensional molecular array with a periodic repeating pattern. It is vital to many processes occurring in nature and manufacturing. Geologic crystallization is responsible from huge deposits of carbonates, sulfates, and phosphates that often grow in mountains and quarries. This process occurs over long periods of time, often at high temperatures and pressures, and results in large and usually highly ordered crystals such as diamond.