Definitions for capillary action

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word capillary action

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  1. capillarity, capillary action(noun)

    a phenomenon associated with surface tension and resulting in the elevation or depression of liquids in capillaries

WiktionaryRate this definition:(0.00 / 0 votes)

  1. capillary action(Noun)

    The drawing of a liquid (often against gravity) into or up narrow interstices due to surface tension

FreebaseRate this definition:(0.00 / 0 votes)

  1. Capillary action

    Capillary action is the ability of a liquid to flow in narrow spaces without the assistance of, and in opposition to, external forces like gravity. The effect can be seen in the drawing up of liquids between the hairs of a paint-brush, in a thin tube, in porous materials such as paper, in some non-porous materials such as liquified carbon fiber, or in a cell. It occurs because of intermolecular forces between the liquid and solid surrounding surfaces. If the diameter of the tube is sufficiently small, then the combination of surface tension and adhesive forces between the liquid and container act to lift the liquid.

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