What Is an Intensive Property?

Definition and Examples of an Intensive Property

The Refractive Index of a Diamond Is an Intensive Property.
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An intensive property is a property of matter that does not change as the amount of matter changes. It is a bulk property, which means it is a physical property that is not dependent on the size or mass of a sample.

In contrast, an extensive property is one that does depend on sample size. Examples of extensive properties include mass and volume. The ratio of two extensive properties, however, is an intensive property. For example, density (an intensive property) is mass per unit volume, where mass and volume are both extensive properties.

Examples of Intensive Properties

Examples of intensive properties include:

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Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "What Is an Intensive Property?" ThoughtCo, Aug. 2, 2022, thoughtco.com/definition-of-intensive-property-605250. Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2022, August 2). What Is an Intensive Property? Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/definition-of-intensive-property-605250 Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "What Is an Intensive Property?" ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/definition-of-intensive-property-605250 (accessed May 31, 2023).