Laws of Crystallography

Laws of Crystallography

Crystallography is based on three fundamental laws.

(i) Law of constancy of interfacial angles: This law states that angle between adjacent corresponding faces is inter facial angles of the crystal of a particular substance is always constant inspite of different shapes and sizes and mode of growth of crystal. The size and shape of crystal depend upon the conditions of crystallisation. This law is also known as Steno's Law.

(ii) Law of rational indices: This law states that the ratio of intercepts of different faces of a crystal with the three axes are constant and can be expressed by rational numbers that the intercepts of any face of a crystal along the crystallographic axes are either equal to unit intercepts (i.e., intercepts made by unit cell) a, b, c or some simple whole number multiples of them e.g., na, n' b, n''c, where n, n' and n'' are simple whole numbers. The whole numbers n, n' and n'' are called Weiss indices. This law was given by Hauy.

(iii) Law of constancy of symmetry: According to this law, all crystals of a substance have the same elements of symmetry is plane of symmetry, axis of symmetry and centre of symmetry.

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