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Chemistry LibreTexts

6.3: Sublimation

  • Page ID
    93428
  • Some compounds are capable of sublimation, which is the direct phase change from solid to gas. Sublimation is an analogous process to boiling, as it occurs when a compound's vapor pressure equals its applied pressure (often the atmospheric pressure). The difference is that sublimation involves a solid's vapor pressure instead of a liquid's. Most solids do not have an appreciable vapor pressure at easily accessible temperatures, and for this reason the ability to sublime is uncommon. Compounds that are capable of sublimation tend to be those with weak intermolecular forces in the solid state.

    • 6.3A: Overview of Sublimation
      Some compounds are capable of sublimation, which is the direct phase change from solid to gas. Solid carbon dioxide is an example of a substance that sublimes readily at atmospheric pressure, as a chunk of dry ice will not melt, but will seem to "disappear" as it turns directly into carbon dioxide gas. Sublimation is an analogous process to boiling, as it occurs when a compound's vapor pressure equals its applied pressure (often the atmospheric pressure).
    • 6.3B: Step-by-Step Procedures for Sublimation in the Laboratory