Single crystal

single-crystalsingle crystalsmonocrystallinemonocrystalmonolithicmonosingle-crystallinecrystallinecrystalsmono crystal
A single crystal or monocrystalline solid is a material in which the crystal lattice of the entire sample is continuous and unbroken to the edges of the sample, with no grain boundaries.wikipedia
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Solid

solidsssolid state
A single crystal or monocrystalline solid is a material in which the crystal lattice of the entire sample is continuous and unbroken to the edges of the sample, with no grain boundaries.
In some cases, the regular ordering can continue unbroken over a large scale, for example diamonds, where each diamond is a single crystal.

Crystallite

polycrystallinegraingrains
In between the two extremes exist polycrystalline, which is made up of a number of smaller crystals known as crystallites, and paracrystalline phases.
While the structure of a (monocrystalline) crystal is highly ordered and its lattice is continuous and unbroken, amorphous materials, such as glass and many polymers, are non-crystalline and do not display any structures, as their constituents are not arranged in an ordered manner.

Paracrystalline

paracrystalsParacrystal model and theory
In between the two extremes exist polycrystalline, which is made up of a number of smaller crystals known as crystallites, and paracrystalline phases.
In a highly ordered, perfectly crystalline material, or single crystal, the location of every atom in the structure can be described exactly measuring out from a single origin.

Boule (crystal)

boulesboulecrystal boules
Specific techniques to produce large single crystals (aka boules) include the Czochralski process and the Bridgman technique.
A boule is a single crystal ingot produced by synthetic means.

Czochralski process

CzochralskiCzochralski methodCzochralski crystal growth
Specific techniques to produce large single crystals (aka boules) include the Czochralski process and the Bridgman technique.
The Czochralski process is a method of crystal growth used to obtain single crystals of semiconductors (e.g. silicon, germanium and gallium arsenide), metals (e.g. palladium, platinum, silver, gold), salts and synthetic gemstones.

Turbine blade

bladesfan bladeturbine blades
Another application of single crystal solids is in materials science in the production of high strength materials with low thermal creep, such as turbine blades.
Aside from alloy improvements, a major breakthrough was the development of directional solidification (DS) and single crystal (SC) production methods.

Surface science

surface chemistrysurface physicssurface
Single crystals are essential in research especially condensed-matter physics, materials science, surface science etc. The detailed study of the crystal structure of a material by techniques such as Bragg diffraction and helium atom scattering is much easier with monocrystals.
Instead, well-defined single crystal surfaces of catalytically active materials such as platinum are often used as model catalysts.

Hydrothermal synthesis

hydrothermalhydrothermal processhydrothermally
Other less exotic methods of crystallization may be used, depending on the physical properties of the substance, including hydrothermal synthesis, sublimation, or simply solvent-based crystallization.
Hydrothermal synthesis can be defined as a method of synthesis of single crystals that depends on the solubility of minerals in hot water under high pressure.

Seed crystal

Seedingnucleiseed
A seed crystal is a small piece of single crystal or polycrystal material from which a large crystal of typically the same material is to be grown in a laboratory.

Crystal structure

unit celllatticecrystal lattice
Single crystals are essential in research especially condensed-matter physics, materials science, surface science etc. The detailed study of the crystal structure of a material by techniques such as Bragg diffraction and helium atom scattering is much easier with monocrystals.
Treating a grain boundary geometrically as an interface of a single crystal cut into two parts, one of which is rotated, we see that there are five variables required to define a grain boundary.

Epitaxy

epitaxialepitaxial growthepitaxially
A different technology to create single crystalline materials is called epitaxy.
In surface science, epitaxy is used to create and study monolayer and multilayer films of adsorbed organic molecules on single crystalline surfaces.

Laser-heated pedestal growth

Laser heated pedestal growth
In addition, LHPG is a crucible-free technique, which allows single crystals to be grown with high purity and low stress.

Recrystallization (chemistry)

recrystallizationrecrystallizedrecrystallisation
Other less exotic methods of crystallization may be used, depending on the physical properties of the substance, including hydrothermal synthesis, sublimation, or simply solvent-based crystallization.

Crystallization

crystallizecrystallisationcrystallized
In the case of silicon and metal single crystal fabrication the techniques used involve highly controlled and therefore relatively slow crystallization.

Bravais lattice

crystal latticelatticeBravais lattices
A single crystal or monocrystalline solid is a material in which the crystal lattice of the entire sample is continuous and unbroken to the edges of the sample, with no grain boundaries.

Grain boundary

grain boundaries grain boundariescrystallite discontinuities
A single crystal or monocrystalline solid is a material in which the crystal lattice of the entire sample is continuous and unbroken to the edges of the sample, with no grain boundaries.

Anisotropy

anisotropicanisotropiesanisotropically
The absence of the defects associated with grain boundaries can give monocrystals unique properties, particularly mechanical, optical and electrical, which can also be anisotropic, depending on the type of crystallographic structure.

Crystallography

crystallographercrystallographiccrystallographically
The absence of the defects associated with grain boundaries can give monocrystals unique properties, particularly mechanical, optical and electrical, which can also be anisotropic, depending on the type of crystallographic structure.

Entropy

entropicentropicallyspecific entropy
Because entropic effects favour the presence of some imperfections in the microstructure of solids, such as impurities, inhomogeneous strain and crystallographic defects such as dislocations, perfect single crystals of meaningful size are exceedingly rare in nature, and are also difficult to produce in the laboratory, though they can be made under controlled conditions.

Impurity

impuritiesimpurescum
Because entropic effects favour the presence of some imperfections in the microstructure of solids, such as impurities, inhomogeneous strain and crystallographic defects such as dislocations, perfect single crystals of meaningful size are exceedingly rare in nature, and are also difficult to produce in the laboratory, though they can be made under controlled conditions.

Dislocation

dislocationsscrew dislocationdislocated
Because entropic effects favour the presence of some imperfections in the microstructure of solids, such as impurities, inhomogeneous strain and crystallographic defects such as dislocations, perfect single crystals of meaningful size are exceedingly rare in nature, and are also difficult to produce in the laboratory, though they can be made under controlled conditions.

Mineral

mineralsmineral depositsaccessory mineral
On the other hand, imperfect single crystals can reach enormous sizes in nature: several mineral species such as beryl, gypsum and feldspars are known to have produced crystals several metres across.

Beryl

aquamarinemorganitered beryl
On the other hand, imperfect single crystals can reach enormous sizes in nature: several mineral species such as beryl, gypsum and feldspars are known to have produced crystals several metres across.

Gypsum

gypsiferouscalcium sulfate dihydrategypseous
On the other hand, imperfect single crystals can reach enormous sizes in nature: several mineral species such as beryl, gypsum and feldspars are known to have produced crystals several metres across.