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Adhesion vs. Cohesion: What's the Difference?

Edited by Sawaira Riaz || By Sumera Saeed || Updated on October 13, 2023
Adhesion refers to the attraction between different substances, while cohesion involves the attraction between similar particles or molecules.

Key Differences

Adhesion involves the interaction and attraction that exists between molecules of different substances. This phenomenon is what enables water to stick to a windowpane. Conversely, cohesion represents the force of attraction between like molecules, which is evident when water droplets merge together, demonstrating a unity due to similar molecular forces.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023
When discussing adhesion, the concept often extends to scenarios such as paint adhering to a wall or tape sticking to a surface. Cohesion, however, plays a pivotal role in phenomena like surface tension, where the molecules at the surface of a liquid, like water, stick together to resist external forces.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023
Adhesion can introduce considerations regarding how various substances, such as liquids and solids, interact and bind together. The mechanisms of cohesion are key to understanding why substances, such as water, can form droplets, since the molecules within the substance are drawn to one another.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023
In biological contexts, adhesion may refer to cellular interactions with surfaces or other cells, a vital process for numerous biological functions. Cohesion, in a similar context, might be reflected in the tendency of similar cells or molecules within a substance to clump or stay together, demonstrating a uniform interaction.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023
Adhesion and cohesion, though distinct, can often work in tandem. For instance, capillary action in plants involves both - adhesion of water to the plant vessel walls and cohesion between water molecules, facilitating the upward movement of water against gravity. This intertwined functionality showcases the necessity and ubiquity of both phenomena in natural processes.
Janet White
Oct 13, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Basic Definition

The tendency to adhere to different types.
The tendency to stick together.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Linguistic Relevance

Atypical and not standard.
Commonly discussed in text linguistics
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

In Writing

Might metaphorically refer to the way disparate ideas or elements in a text are joined or linked
Refers to how well the elements within a text connect and flow logically from one to the next
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Textual Aspect

Could imply the connection between different paragraphs or sections which are thematically different
Concerns the logical and grammatical connections that improve readability within a paragraph or between sentences
Sara Rehman
Oct 13, 2023

Example Application

A text might be said to demonstrate "adhesion" by awkwardly linking dissimilar ideas or themes
A text shows "cohesion" by using connective words and consistent themes to create a smooth, logical flow
Harlon Moss
Oct 13, 2023
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Adhesion and Cohesion Definitions

Adhesion

Adhesion pertains to the sticking of different substances due to intermolecular forces.
The adhesion between paint and wall enables a uniform coat of color.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 13, 2023

Cohesion

In a social context, cohesion implies a form of unity or sticking together among group members.
The cohesion among team members was evident in their synchronized activities and communications.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 13, 2023

Adhesion

Adhesion can involve the binding of a liquid to the surface of a solid.
Water exhibits adhesion when it spreads across a glass surface.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Cohesion

Cohesion describes the tendency of similar particles or molecules to stick together.
The cohesion between water molecules allows droplets to form and maintain their shape.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 13, 2023

Adhesion

Adhesion can also refer to the process through which different molecules attract each other.
Due to adhesion, ink can stick to paper, allowing us to write and print documents.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Cohesion

Cohesion refers to the attractive force that holds alike substances together within a singular form.
Surface tension is created by the cohesion of water molecules at a liquid’s surface.
Harlon Moss
Oct 13, 2023

Adhesion

Adhesion is a phenomenon where distinct materials hold together at their interface.
The adhesion of a sticker to a notebook involves forces at the interface of the two.
Sara Rehman
Oct 13, 2023

Cohesion

In linguistics, cohesion is the use of linguistic devices to link sentences and paragraphs coherently.
The use of pronouns contributes to the cohesion in text, as they refer back to previously mentioned entities.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Adhesion

In biology, adhesion may describe cells binding to different cellular or material surfaces.
Cellular adhesion allows white blood cells to attach to the walls of blood vessels.
Sara Rehman
Oct 13, 2023

Cohesion

Cohesion in writing means ensuring that all ideas and sections are logically linked and unified.
Her essay lacked cohesion because the paragraphs seemed to discuss unrelated topics.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Adhesion

The process or condition of sticking or staying attached
The adhesion of the glue to wood.
Sumera Saeed
Aug 06, 2017

Cohesion

The act, process, or condition of cohering
Exhibited strong cohesion in the family unit.
Sumera Saeed
Aug 06, 2017

Adhesion

(Physics) The physical attraction or joining of two substances, especially the macroscopically observable attraction of dissimilar substances.
Sumera Saeed
Aug 06, 2017

Cohesion

(Physics) The intermolecular attraction by which the elements of a body are held together.
Sumera Saeed
Aug 06, 2017

FAQs

What is adhesion?

Adhesion refers to the attractive force between dissimilar substances or materials.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Are adhesion and cohesion the same?

No, adhesion involves different substances, while cohesion involves identical substances.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

How does adhesion occur?

Adhesion occurs through intermolecular forces between different materials.
Harlon Moss
Oct 13, 2023

Can adhesion and cohesion occur together?

Yes, they can act simultaneously, as seen in phenomena like capillary action.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

What is an example of adhesion?

Water sticking to a glass surface is an example of adhesion.
Sara Rehman
Oct 13, 2023

How does cohesion manifest in liquids?

In liquids, cohesion can lead to surface tension and the formation of droplets.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Is cohesion responsible for mercury forming spherical droplets?

Yes, cohesion among mercury molecules causes them to form spherical shapes.
Harlon Moss
Oct 13, 2023

What role does cohesion play in water transportation in plants?

Cohesion helps water molecules stick together, assisting in their upward movement through plants.
Harlon Moss
Oct 13, 2023

Can cohesion be observed in solid materials?

Yes, cohesion in solids helps maintain their shape by keeping their particles bound together.
Harlon Moss
Oct 13, 2023

How is cohesion defined?

Cohesion pertains to the attractive force that causes similar particles or molecules to stick together.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 13, 2023

How does cohesion contribute to surface tension?

Cohesion causes similar molecules at the surface of a liquid to pull together, creating surface tension.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Why is cohesion vital in molecular biology?

Cohesion helps similar molecules or cells stay together, facilitating various biological processes.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

What is a practical application of adhesion in daily life?

Adhesion is utilized in gluing objects, where a substance binds materials together.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

What causes cohesion?

Cohesion is caused by attractive forces between similar molecules or particles.
Janet White
Oct 13, 2023

Is adhesion only related to liquids?

No, adhesion can involve various states of matter, such as a solid and a liquid.
Janet White
Oct 13, 2023

What adhesive forces are involved in adhesion?

Adhesive forces can include van der Waals forces, hydrogen bonding, and mechanical forces.
Harlon Moss
Oct 13, 2023

How is cohesion related to viscosity in liquids?

Higher cohesion in a liquid generally correlates to higher viscosity, as the molecules stick together more.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Can adhesion occur in gases?

Adhesion typically involves solids and liquids, being less relevant in gaseous interactions.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

Does adhesion always require two different substances?

Yes, adhesion specifically describes the binding force between different substances.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023

How does adhesion affect painting?

Adhesion ensures that paint sticks and stays on the surface being painted.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 13, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.
Edited by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.

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