Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 688–692 | Cite as

The equivalency of surface tension, surface energy and surface free energy

  • S. W. Ip
  • J. M. Toguri


In much of the available literature, there is confusion regarding the correct use of the terms surface tension, surface energy and surface free energy. As a result, these three terms have been used interchangeably to describe the same quantity. This problem is particularly serious in the area of solid surface science. Linford has examined and discussed such inconsistencies but failed to differentiate the three quantities clearly. In the present paper, the definitions and the relationships between surface tension, surface energy and surface free energy are examined and their proper usage clarified.


Polymer Free Energy Surface Tension Surface Energy Solid Surface 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. W. Ip
    • 1
  • J. M. Toguri
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Metallurgy and Materials ScienceUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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