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What causes thermal expansion?

What causes thermal expansion?

It says in most textbooks this is caused by particles vibrating more gaining more energy and thus occupying more space etc (kinetic theory) but is there a more in depth answer to this as this seems to be over simplified.

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Thermal expansion is less considered as a mechanical phenomenon and more of a thermodynamic event. It is the result of increased free-volume that arises from the added vibrational (thermal) energy. The more you heat the material, the more it vibrates, creating additional free-volume around each molecule, thus expanding the volume of the part. ...

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In a 213 word solution, the concepts are clearly explained. It is discussed what causes thermal expansion.