Melting Definition in Chemistry

Chemistry Glossary Definition of Melting

Ice cream in a bowl
An example of melting is seen when ice cream changes from a solid into a liquid. Chris Gramly/Getty Images

Melting is the process by which a substance changes from the solid phase to the liquid phase. Melting is also known as fusion, although this term has several meanings. Melting occurs when the internal energy of a solid increases, usually through the application of heat or pressure, such that the molecules become less ordered.

Example

In ice cube melting into liquid water is a familiar example of the process. Another common example is melting butter in a hot pan.

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Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Melting Definition in Chemistry." ThoughtCo, Aug. 25, 2020, thoughtco.com/definition-of-melting-604568. Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2020, August 25). Melting Definition in Chemistry. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/definition-of-melting-604568 Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Melting Definition in Chemistry." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/definition-of-melting-604568 (accessed May 9, 2021).