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refractory material

(refractory)
(material with high condensation temperature)

Refractory material is material with a high condensation temperature (essentially, boiling point), thus turns to solid early as it cools. The opposite is called volatile material. The material in question can be a pure chemical element (refractory element or volatile element), or it can be a compound (refractory compound or volatile compound). A commonly-used line between the two is condensation above/below 1300K.

For example, iron is moderately refractory and lithium is moderately volatile.

This astrophysical usage of the term refractory is perhaps a specialized sense of the word's more general meaning: "heat resistant".


(physics,chemistry)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Refractory_(planetary_science)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Refractory

Referenced by:
potassium/thorium ratio (K/Th ratio)
volatile material

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