Which are more malleable: metals or nonmetals?

1 Answer
Nov 20, 2016

Malleability is a fundamental metallic property.


Malleability, the ability of a material to be hammered out into a sheet (from the Latin, #"malleus, hammer"#, is a fundamental property of metals. Solid non-metals, e.g. diamond, sulfur, iodine, do not tend to have this property.

The property of malleability can be attributed to metallic bonding, i.e. positive ions in an electron sea, in which the nuclei can move with respect to each other, yet still maintain bonding to the electrons.