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Tin cry: Wikis


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A tin cry is the characteristic sound heard when a bar of tin is bent. Variously described as a "screaming" or "crackling" sound, the effect is caused by the shearing of crystals in the metal. The sound is not particularly loud, despite terms like "crying" and "screaming".

The tin cry is often demonstrated as a simple science experiment. The bar of tin will "cry" repeatedly when bent until it breaks. The experiment can then be recycled by melting and recrystallizing the metal. The low melting point of tin (only 232 °C, or about 500 K) makes re-casting easy. Tin anneals at reasonably-low temperature as well, normalizing tin's microstructure of crystallites/grains.

Although most typical of tin, other materials, including niobium, indium and gallium, exhibit a similar effect.


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