Little Pro on 2016-01-13
Melting point is the temperature at which solid and liquid coexist at equilibrium. To simply put, it measures the temperature at which a solid melts. If a chemical decomposes before reaching its melting point, decomposition temperature shall be provided instead. You can often find it in the section 9 of a safety data sheet (SDS).
Knowing the melting point of a chemical is very important for its storage & transport. You probably do not want to store or transport a solid at a temperature close to or above its melting point in which case melting may cause leaking and severe consequences.
In addition to that, melting point is often used to predict the partition behavior of a chemical between solid and gas phases. A higher melting point indicates greater intermolecular forces and therefore less vapour pressure.
Melting point test is not required for every chemical. Usually it is conducted for solid materials under normal conditions. Under REACH, a vapor pressure test does not need to be conducted if the melting point of a substance is above 300 °C.
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