Let us remember that matter has a series of physical and chemical properties that characterize and differentiate it. Chemical properties are those that can describe what a substance is like, and how it can change from one substance to another when a chemical reaction occurs . The physical properties, which in the case of malleability are those that interest us, are those properties that are characteristic of a substance that we can observe and witness with our senses .


What is malleability?

Malleability is a physical property possessed by some of the elements of matter that exist that allows them to be decomposed into sheets that allow them to be given a certain shape without breaking or destroying them .

  • Definition of malleability
  • Malleability properties
  • How it differs from ductility
  • Examples

Definition of malleability

We can say that malleability is, in reality, a property that belongs to the plasticity that materials possess, that is, a subtype of plasticity. It consists of the ability of the elements to be able to be modified when they are subjected to enormous effort , but with the ability not to break or suffer any type of damage. The malleability tells us about the formation of filaments , it allows us the distribution of fairly fine or thin sheets that retain their integrity because they do not break and there is no method that allows quantifying these sheets.


In other words, we can also say that malleability is a characteristic of some metals by means of which we can obtain thin sheets of said metal. It is important to mention that as the heat increases , so will the malleability. The most malleable metals are gold, platinum, copper, tin, zinc, iron, lead, and nickel .

Malleability properties

The properties that have the malleability are as follows:

  • They can modify their shape without breaking: under pressure, metals that have malleability can be transformed into thin sheets without breaking, for example, aluminum foil and gold.
  • They are elements that do not corrode or rust : these situations are very difficult to observe in a metal that is malleable and for this reason they are used in technology .
  • Plasticity : this refers to the ability of a material when it is subjected to a stress to deform it and maintain this deformation once the stress disappears.
  • Mechanical Resistance : this type of resistance occurs before the action of certain types of efforts, such as traction and compression .

How it differs from ductility

To know their difference we must remember what each term means. The malleability is the property that some materials or metals have to be decomposed into sheets without causing damage to the material, without breaking it or producing some kind of defect , so they can be extended without being damaged. The ductility , is a property of some materials when they are under the action of a given force, can become deformed as yarns , although no break, It is common to observe them in some metals and asphalt, which are also known as ductile.


  • Copper malleability : copper  malleability is based on the fact that it is a metal that deforms very easily when it is at room temperature and does so without breaking or cracking. Therefore, it is a metal that, although it is at room temperature, can become stretched , hammered , pressed , deformed and yet it will not break.
  • Aluminum malleability: it  is a very malleable metal , so it can be laminated in thin layers, such as aluminum foil and aluminum cans, which is why it is one of the metals most used today by the industry .
  • Gold malleability:  gold is one of the most malleable metals, it can be changed in its shape and deformed at room temperature without breaking. Due to its good malleability, it can be hammered or drawn without having to be melted, and that is why it has been used in jewelry since ancient times.
  • Tin malleability:  tin is a fairly malleable metal when it is at room temperature , it can also be easily mixed , and it is resistant to acids and bad weather. It can be used to make tinfoil and also as a food preservative.

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