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Elasticity vs. Plasticity: What's the Difference?

Edited by Sumera Saeed || By Huma Saeed || Published on November 26, 2023
Elasticity is the ability of a material to return to its original shape after deformation, while plasticity is the permanent deformation of a material under stress.

Key Differences

Elasticity refers to a material's capacity to regain its original form after being stretched or compressed. Plasticity, on the other hand, is the tendency of a material to undergo permanent deformation when subjected to external forces.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023
Materials with high elasticity, like rubber, can endure significant stretching and still return to their original shape. In contrast, plastic materials, such as clay, retain the shape they are molded into and do not revert to their original form.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023
The concept of elasticity is central in applications where flexibility and resilience are crucial, like in springs and elastic bands. Plasticity is key in processes like forging and sculpting, where permanent shaping of materials is desired.
Sumera Saeed
Nov 26, 2023
The recovery of elastic materials from deformation is due to their internal molecular forces. Plastic deformation, however, involves a reorganization of the material's molecular structure, resulting in a lasting change.
Harlon Moss
Nov 26, 2023
In elasticity, the deformation is temporary and the material behaves like a spring, following Hooke's law up to a limit. In plasticity, the deformation is permanent and the material does not conform to Hooke's law beyond its yield point.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 26, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Definition

Ability to return to original shape after stress.
Permanent deformation under stress.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

Deformation Type

Temporary and reversible.
Permanent and irreversible.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

Material Behavior

Returns to original shape after stress is removed.
Retains new shape even after stress is removed.
Sumera Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

Molecular Change

No permanent molecular change.
Permanent molecular reorganization.
Janet White
Nov 26, 2023

Example Applications

Springs, elastic bands.
Sculpting, metal forging.
Harlon Moss
Nov 26, 2023
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Elasticity and Plasticity Definitions

Elasticity

Elasticity is the property of material to recover its original shape after deformation.
A rubber band exhibits elasticity when it returns to its original shape after being stretched.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 16, 2023

Plasticity

Plasticity is the ability of a material to undergo permanent deformation.
The plasticity of clay makes it ideal for pottery, as it retains its shaped form after molding.
Harlon Moss
Nov 16, 2023

Elasticity

The ability of a material to resist and recover from deformation.
The elasticity of a spring allows it to return to its initial length after being compressed.
Sumera Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Plasticity

A characteristic of materials that do not return to their original shape after stress.
The plasticity of earthen materials is essential in brick-making.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 16, 2023

Elasticity

Elasticity is the measure of a material's flexibility.
The high elasticity of a yoga mat enables it to regain shape after being rolled up.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 16, 2023

Plasticity

The property of materials to maintain a changed shape after force application.
The plasticity of metals is exploited in forging processes to shape tools and components.
Huma Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Elasticity

The reversible deformability of materials under stress.
Elastic fibers in clothing maintain elasticity, providing comfort and fit.
Harlon Moss
Nov 16, 2023

Plasticity

Plasticity refers to the permanent deformation of a material under stress.
Plastic deformation is observed in metals when they are bent or hammered into new shapes.
Huma Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Elasticity

Elasticity refers to a material's ability to withstand stress without permanent deformation.
The elasticity of a car tire is crucial for absorbing impacts without deforming.
Huma Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Plasticity

The quality of a material to be molded or altered permanently.
Plasticity in dough allows bakers to shape it into various forms.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 16, 2023

Elasticity

The condition or property of being elastic; flexibility.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Plasticity

Capable of being shaped or formed
Plastic material such as clay.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

The property of returning to an initial form or state following deformation.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Plasticity

Relating to or dealing with shaping or modeling
The plastic art of sculpture.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

The degree to which this property is exhibited.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Plasticity

Having the qualities of sculpture; well-formed
"the astonishing plastic beauty of the chorus girls" (Frank Harris).
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

A measure of how changes in price affect supply or demand for a given good, equal to the percentage of change in supply or demand divided by the percentage of the price change.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

(physics) The property by virtue of which a material deformed under load can regain its original dimensions when unloaded
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

(economics) The sensitivity of changes in a quantity with respect to changes in another quantity.
If the sales of an item drop by 5% when the price increases by 10%, its price elasticity is −0.5.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

(computing) A measure of the flexibility of a data store's data model and clustering capabilities.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

(computing) A system's ability to adapt to changes in workload by automatically provisioning and de-provisioning resources.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

(mathematics) The ratio of the relative change in a function's output with respect to the relative change in its input, for infinitesimal changes at a certain point.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

The quality of being elastic.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

Adaptability.
Her elasticity allowed her to recover quickly.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

The quality of being elastic; the inherent property in bodies by which they recover their former figure or dimensions, after the removal of external pressure or altering force; springiness; resilience; tendency to rebound; as, the elasticity of caoutchouc; the elasticity of the air.
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

Power of resistance to, or recovery from, depression or overwork; - usually referred to as resilience[3].
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

Elasticity

The tendency of a body to return to its original shape after it has been stretched or compressed;
The waistband had lost its snap
Huma Saeed
Nov 15, 2023

FAQs

What defines a material's elasticity?

Its ability to return to its original shape after being deformed.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

What is plasticity in materials?

The ability to undergo permanent deformation under stress.
Sumera Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

How is plasticity used in industry?

In manufacturing processes like metal forging and clay molding.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

Can materials be both elastic and plastic?

Yes, some materials exhibit both properties, depending on the stress applied.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

What is an example of elasticity?

A rubber band stretching and returning to its original size.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 26, 2023

Does temperature affect plasticity?

Yes, higher temperatures can increase the plasticity of materials.
Harlon Moss
Nov 26, 2023

What is a practical application of plasticity?

The shaping of metals in automotive bodywork.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 26, 2023

Can elasticity be measured?

Yes, using parameters like Young's modulus.
Janet White
Nov 26, 2023

Can the plasticity of a material change over time?

Yes, due to factors like aging, wear, and environmental conditions.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

What role does plasticity play in construction?

It's important for materials like concrete and asphalt in molding and setting.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

What causes elasticity in materials?

The intermolecular forces that allow materials to resume their shape.
Harlon Moss
Nov 26, 2023

Are elastic materials always soft?

No, some hard materials, like steel, can also exhibit elasticity.
Janet White
Nov 26, 2023

Does plasticity imply a material is weak?

Not necessarily; it relates to deformability, not strength.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

Is the elasticity of a material permanent?

Yes, as long as the material's elastic limit is not exceeded.
Harlon Moss
Nov 26, 2023

How does plasticity benefit sculpture?

It allows sculptors to shape materials like clay into lasting forms.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

Is rubber an example of a highly elastic material?

Yes, rubber is known for its high elasticity.
Harlon Moss
Nov 26, 2023

Can all metals show plasticity?

Most metals do, but the degree of plasticity varies among different types.
Janet White
Nov 26, 2023

Are there limits to a material's elasticity?

Yes, exceeding the elastic limit can lead to permanent deformation.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023

How is plasticity important in material science?

It's crucial for understanding how materials can be shaped and used in various applications.
Harlon Moss
Nov 26, 2023

Is elasticity a factor in material selection for springs?

Absolutely, as springs require materials with high elasticity for effective operation.
Huma Saeed
Nov 26, 2023
About Author
Written by
Huma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.
Edited 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.

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