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Minerals and the crystalline state

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Figure 3

The diagram for the gaseous state shows sparsely scattered, randomly orientated molecules with high velocities.

The diagram for the liquid state shows more abundant, randomly orientated molecules with slower velocities.

The solid state is represented by two diagrams. The diagram for slow cooling shows stacked linear rows of molecules, giving a crystalline solid with an ordered structure.

The diagram for very fast cooling and quenching shows closely scattered but randomly orientated molecules, giving an amorphous solid or glass.