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The melting point for iron is a temperature at which most of the atoms in a solid have gained enough energy from heat to break their bonds. When most of the atoms have this energy, they vibrate very fast and can slip past each other. This is called “melting.”
Several different allotropes (a variety of shapes) of iron occur in its pure state. Delta iron, which is body-centred cubic, is stable above a temperature of about 1300 degC (2,534 degF). Below this temperature, iron changes to gamma iron, which is also body-centred cubic but is more paramagnetic; this is important in steelmaking.
However, at much higher temperatures and pressures, the metal transforms into another structure that is more prone to breaking its bonds. This new structure is called e-iron, or hexagonal close-packed iron, and it is the most common form found in the Earth’s core.
There are other metals that have a lower melting point than iron, but these are alloys (metals that contain more than one element). These types of alloys vary in their properties and therefore their melting points.
Steel, for example, is an iron alloy that contains other elements to make it stronger and more corrosion-resistant. It has a lower melting point because of this, and it is used in a wide variety of things.
The melting point for iron is a very important piece of information for scientists to understand. It helps them determine how the Earth’s core behaves and the history of its temperature.