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Science  13 Jul 1984:
Vol. 225, Issue 4658, pp. 198-200
DOI: 10.1126/science.225.4658.198


Studies of melting and resolidification were carried out on Spacelab 1 on the zinc-lead binary, an alloy which exhibits a miscibility gap in the liquid state. The possibility of maintaining the state of homogeneous dispersion of lead in the zinc matrix in a microgravity environment was verified. The second objective of the experiment was to study Ostwald ripening of the lead droplets (manifested as slow coarsening of the droplets) within the region of immiscibility. An increase in droplet size was observed and may have been due to Ostwald ripening, although the effect on droplet size of precipitation during cooling must be analyzed before this can be determined conclusively.