physical process

Definitions of physical process
  1. noun
    a sustained phenomenon or one marked by gradual changes through a series of states
    synonyms: process
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    phenomenon
    any state or process known through the senses rather than by intuition or reasoning
    chelation
    (medicine) the process of removing a heavy metal from the bloodstream by means of a chelate as in treating lead or mercury poisoning
    dealignment
    a process whereby voters are moved toward nonpartisanship thus weakening the structure of political parties
    decrease, decrement
    a process of becoming smaller or shorter
    degeneration, devolution
    the process of declining from a higher to a lower level of effective power or vitality or essential quality
    development, evolution
    a process in which something passes by degrees to a different stage (especially a more advanced or mature stage)
    economic process
    any process affecting the production and development and management of material wealth
    encapsulation
    the process of enclosing (as in a capsule)
    execution, instruction execution
    (computer science) the process of carrying out an instruction by a computer
    human process
    a process in which human beings are involved
    growth, increase, increment
    a process of becoming larger or longer or more numerous or more important
    industrial process
    a systematic series of mechanical or chemical operations that produce or manufacture something
    irreversible process
    any process that is not reversible
    iteration, looping
    (computer science) executing the same set of instructions a given number of times or until a specified result is obtained
    iteration, loop
    (computer science) a single execution of a set of instructions that are to be repeated
    action, activity, natural action, natural process
    a process existing in or produced by nature (rather than by the intent of human beings)
    functioning, operation, performance
    process or manner of functioning or operating
    biological process, organic process
    a process occurring in living organisms
    photography
    the process of producing images of objects on photosensitive surfaces
    processing
    preparing or putting through a prescribed procedure
    reversible process
    any process in which a system can be made to pass through the same states in the reverse order when the process is reversed
    sensitisation, sensitization
    (psychology) the process of becoming highly sensitive to specific events or situations (especially emotional events or situations)
    defining, shaping
    any process serving to define the shape of something
    variation
    the process of varying or being varied
    covariation
    (statistics) correlated variation
    radiation
    the spread of a group of organisms into new habitats
    natural phenomenon
    all phenomena that are not artificial
    levitation
    the phenomenon of a person or thing rising into the air by apparently supernatural means
    metempsychosis, rebirth
    after death the soul begins a new cycle of existence in another human body
    consequence, effect, event, issue, outcome, result, upshot
    a phenomenon that follows and is caused by some previous phenomenon
    chance, fortune, hazard, luck
    an unknown and unpredictable phenomenon that causes an event to result one way rather than another
    fortune, luck
    an unknown and unpredictable phenomenon that leads to a favorable outcome
    pulsation
    a periodically recurring phenomenon that alternately increases and decreases some quantity
    absorption
    (physics) the process in which incident radiated energy is retained without reflection or transmission on passing through a medium
    accession
    a process of increasing by addition (as to a collection or group)
    accretion, accumulation
    an increase by natural growth or addition
    accretion
    (geology) an increase in land resulting from alluvial deposits or waterborne sediment
    accretion
    (biology) growth by addition as by the adhesion of parts or particles
    accretion
    (astronomy) the formation of a celestial object by the effect of gravity pulling together surrounding objects and gases
    Acheson process
    an industrial process for making graphite by heating a mixture of coke and clay
    acidification
    the process of becoming acid or being converted into an acid
    adaptation, adaption, adjustment
    the process of adapting to something (such as environmental conditions)
    adiabatic process
    (thermodynamics) any process that occurs without gain or loss of heat
    aeration
    the process of exposing to air (so as to purify)
    agglutination
    a clumping of bacteria or red cells when held together by antibodies (agglutinins)
    ageing, aging, senescence
    the organic process of growing older and showing the effects of increasing age
    anaglyphy
    the process of producing pictures in contrasting colors that appear three-dimensional when superimposed and viewed through spectacles with one red and one green lens
    anovulation
    the absence of ovulation due to immaturity or post-maturity or pregnancy or oral contraceptive pills or dysfunction of the ovary
    antiredeposition
    the process of preventing redeposition
    antisepsis, asepsis
    the process of inhibiting the growth and multiplication of microorganisms
    assibilation
    the development of a consonant phoneme into a sibilant
    absorption, assimilation
    the process of absorbing nutrients into the body after digestion
    attack
    the onset of a corrosive or destructive process (as by a chemical agent)
    autotype, autotypy
    process for producing permanent prints in a carbon pigment
    autoregulation
    (physiology) processes that maintain a generally constant physiological state in a cell or organism
    bacteriostasis
    inhibition of the growth of bacteria
    batch processing
    the serial execution of computer programs
    Bessemer process
    an industrial process for making steel using a Bessemer converter to blast air through molten iron and thus burning the excess carbon and impurities; the first successful method of making steel in quantity at low cost
    bloom, blooming
    the organic process of bearing flowers
    blowing
    processing that involves blowing a gas
    activity, bodily function, bodily process, body process
    an organic process that takes place in the body
    capture
    any process in which an atomic or nuclear system acquires an additional particle
    capture
    a process whereby a star or planet holds an object in its gravitational field
    carbon cycle
    the organic circulation of carbon from the atmosphere into organisms and back again
    catabolism, destructive metabolism, dissimilation, katabolism
    breakdown in living organisms of more complex substances into simpler ones together with release of energy
    cell division, cellular division
    the process in reproduction and growth by which a cell divides to form daughter cells
    centrifugation
    the process of separating substances of different densities by the use of a centrifuge
    chemical action, chemical change, chemical process
    (chemistry) any process determined by the atomic and molecular composition and structure of the substances involved
    chromatography
    a process used for separating mixtures by virtue of differences in absorbency
    concretion
    the formation of stonelike objects within a body organ (e.g., the kidneys)
    condensation
    the process of changing from a gaseous to a liquid or solid state
    convection
    (meteorology) the vertical movement of heat or other properties by massive motion within the atmosphere
    crossing over, crossover
    the interchange of sections between pairing homologous chromosomes during the prophase of meiosis
    clotting, coagulation, curdling
    the process of forming semisolid lumps in a liquid
    cyanide process
    an industrial process for extracting gold and silver by treating ore with a sodium cyanide solution
    data processing
    (computer science) a series of operations on data by a computer in order to retrieve or transform or classify information
    decay, decline
    a gradual decrease; as of stored charge or current
    decay
    the process of gradually becoming inferior
    decline, diminution
    change toward something smaller or lower
    deepening
    a process of becoming deeper and more profound
    deflation
    a contraction of economic activity resulting in a decline of prices
    defoliation
    the loss of foliage
    demagnetisation, demagnetization
    the process of removing magnetization
    demand
    the ability and desire to purchase goods and services
    deossification
    the loss of the mineral content of bone tissue
    desensitisation, desensitization
    the process of reducing sensitivity
    desorption
    changing from an adsorbed state on a surface to a gaseous or liquid state
    developing, development
    processing a photosensitive material in order to make an image visible
    diffusion
    (physics) the process in which there is movement of a substance from an area of high concentration of that substance to an area of lower concentration
    digestion
    the organic process by which food is converted into substances that can be absorbed into the body
    digital photography
    a photographic method that stores the image digitally for later reproduction
    disinflation
    a reduction of prices intended to improve the balance of payments
    disintegration, dissolution
    separation into component parts
    distillation, distillment
    the process of purifying a liquid by boiling it and condensing its vapors
    drift
    the gradual departure from an intended course due to external influences (as a ship or plane)
    dry plate, dry plate process
    a former photographic method that used a glass plate coated with a light-sensitive gelatinous emulsion
    eburnation
    a change that occurs in degenerative joint disease in which bone is converted into a dense smooth substance resembling ivory
    ecchymosis
    the escape of blood from ruptured blood vessels into the surrounding tissue to form a purple or black-and-blue spot on the skin
    economic growth
    steady growth in the productive capacity of the economy (and so a growth of national income)
    effacement
    shortening of the uterine cervix and thinning of its walls as it is dilated during labor
    effervescence
    the process of bubbling as gas escapes
    cataphoresis, dielectrolysis, electrophoresis, ionophoresis
    the motion of charged particles in a colloid under the influence of an electric field; particles with a positive charge go to the cathode and negative to the anode
    electrostatic precipitation
    a process that removes suspended dust particles from a gas by applying a high voltage electrostatic charge to the particles and collecting them on charged plates
    erythropoiesis
    the process of producing red blood cells by the stem cells in the bone marrow
    ecesis, establishment
    (ecology) the process by which a plant or animal becomes established in a new habitat
    eutrophication
    excessive nutrients in a lake or other body of water, usually caused by runoff of nutrients (animal waste, fertilizers, sewage) from the land, which causes a dense growth of plant life; the decomposition of the plants depletes the supply of oxygen, leading to the death of animal life
    evolution, organic evolution, phylogenesis, phylogeny
    (biology) the sequence of events involved in the evolutionary development of a species or taxonomic group of organisms
    expression
    (genetics) the process of expressing a gene
    extinction
    the reduction of the intensity of radiation as a consequence of absorption and radiation
    extraction
    the process of obtaining something from a mixture or compound by chemical or physical or mechanical means
    extravasation
    the process of exuding or passing out of a vessel into surrounding tissues; said of blood or lymph or urine
    feedback
    the process in which part of the output of a system is returned to its input in order to regulate its further output
    filtration
    the process whereby fluids pass through a filter or a filtering medium
    flocculation
    the process of flocculating; forming woolly cloudlike aggregations
    flow
    any uninterrupted stream or discharge
    formation
    natural process that causes something to form
    fossilisation, fossilization
    the process of fossilizing a plant or animal that existed in some earlier age; the process of being turned to stone
    fractional process, fractionation
    a process that uses heat to separate a substance into its components
    gastrulation
    the process in which a gastrula develops from a blastula by the inward migration of cells
    geologic process, geological process
    (geology) a natural process whereby geological features are modified
    globalisation, globalization
    growth to a global or worldwide scale
    glycogenesis
    the formation in animals of glycogen from glucose
    development, growing, growth, maturation, ontogenesis, ontogeny
    (biology) the process of an individual organism growing organically; a purely biological unfolding of events involved in an organism changing gradually from a simple to a more complex level
    growth
    a progression from simpler to more complex forms
    Haber process, Haber-Bosch process
    an industrial process for producing ammonia from nitrogen and hydrogen by combining them under high pressure in the presence of an iron catalyst
    curing, hardening, set, solidification, solidifying
    the process of becoming hard or solid by cooling or drying or crystallization
    haematogenesis, haematopoiesis, haemogenesis, haemopoiesis, hematogenesis, hematopoiesis, hemogenesis, hemopoiesis, sanguification
    the formation of blood cells in the living body (especially in the bone marrow)
    heredity
    the biological process whereby genetic factors are transmitted from one generation to the next
    humification
    the process of the formation of humus from plant remains
    epistasis, hypostasis
    the suppression of a gene by the effect of an unrelated gene
    implantation, nidation
    (embryology) the organic process whereby a fertilized egg becomes implanted in the lining of the uterus of placental mammals
    inactivation
    the process of rendering inactive
    inflation, rising prices
    a general and progressive increase in prices
    inhibition
    (physiology) the process whereby nerves can retard or prevent the functioning of an organ or part
    infolding, introversion, intussusception, invagination
    the folding in of an outer layer so as to form a pocket in the surface
    involution
    reduction in size of an organ or part (as in the return of the uterus to normal size after childbirth)
    ion exchange
    a process in which ions are exchanged between a solution and an insoluble (usually resinous) solid; widely used in industrial processing
    ionisation, ionization
    the process of ionizing; the formation of ions by separating atoms or molecules or radicals or by adding or subtracting electrons from atoms by strong electric fields in a gas
    cytokinesis
    organic process consisting of the division of the cytoplasm of a cell following karyokinesis bringing about the separation into two daughter cells
    karyokinesis
    organic process consisting of the division of the nucleus of a cell during mitosis or meiosis
    keratinisation, keratinization
    organic process by which keratin is deposited in cells and the cells become horny (as in nails and hair)
    Krebs citric acid cycle, Krebs cycle, citric acid cycle, tricarboxylic acid cycle
    in all plants and animals: a series of enzymatic reactions in mitochondria involving oxidative metabolism of acetyl compounds to produce high-energy phosphate compounds that are the source of cellular energy
    leach, leaching
    the process of leaching
    linguistic process
    a process involved in human language
    lymphopoiesis
    the formation of lymphocytes in the bone marrow and lymph nodes and thymus and spleen
    lysogenisation, lysogenization
    the process by which a bacterium acquires a phage that becomes integrated into its genome
    magnetic induction, magnetisation, magnetization
    the process that makes a substance magnetic (temporarily or permanently)
    market forces
    the interaction of supply and demand that shapes a market economy
    materialisation, materialization
    the process of coming into being; becoming reality
    maturation, maturement, ripening
    coming to full development; becoming mature
    metabolic process, metabolism
    the organic processes (in a cell or organism) that are necessary for life
    metabolism, metamorphosis
    the marked and rapid transformation of a larva into an adult that occurs in some animals
    multiplication
    a multiplicative increase
    concurrent execution, multiprogramming
    the execution of two or more computer programs by a single computer
    narrowing
    a decrease in width
    nitrogen cycle
    the circulation of nitrogen; nitrates from the soil are absorbed by plants which are eaten by animals that die and decay returning the nitrogen back to the soil
    nitrogen fixation
    the assimilation of atmospheric nitrogen by soil bacteria and its release for plant use on the death of the bacteria
    nondevelopment
    failure of normal development to occur
    nuclear reaction
    (physics) a process that alters the energy or structure or composition of atomic nuclei
    nutrition
    (physiology) the organic process of nourishing or being nourished; the processes by which an organism assimilates food and uses it for growth and maintenance
    obsolescence
    the process of becoming obsolete; falling into disuse or becoming out of date
    opacification
    the process of becoming cloudy or opaque
    organification
    the process of organ formation
    oscillation
    the process of oscillating between states
    ossification
    the developmental process of bone formation
    ossification
    the process of becoming rigidly fixed in a conventional pattern of thought or behavior
    ovulation
    the expulsion of an ovum from the ovary (usually midway in the menstrual cycle)
    oxidative phosphorylation
    an enzymatic process in cell metabolism that synthesizes ATP from ADP
    oxygenation
    the process of providing or combining or treating with oxygen
    pair creation, pair formation, pair production
    the transformation of a gamma-ray photon into an electron and a positron when the photon passes close to an atomic nucleus
    birth, birthing, giving birth, parturition
    the process of giving birth
    pathologic process, pathological process
    an organic process occurring as a consequence of disease
    perennation
    the process of living through a number of years (as a perennial plant)
    phase change, phase transition, physical change, state change
    a change from one state (solid or liquid or gas) to another without a change in chemical composition
    photomechanics, photoplate making
    the process whereby printing surfaces (plates or cylinders) are produced by photographic methods
    population growth
    increase in the number of people who inhabit a territory or state
    powder method, powder photography, powder technique
    a process for identifying minerals or crystals; a small rod is coated with a powdered form of the substance and subjected to suitably modified X-rays; the pattern of diffracted rings is used for identification
    precession of the equinoxes
    a slow westward shift of the equinoxes along the plane of the ecliptic caused by precession of the Earth's axis of rotation
    preservation
    a process that saves organic substances from decay
    proliferation
    a rapid increase in number (especially a rapid increase in the number of deadly weapons)
    psychoanalytic process
    a process that is assumed to occur in psychoanalytic theory
    pullulation
    a rapid and abundant increase
    quellung, quellung reaction
    the swelling of the capsule surrounding a microorganism after reaction with an antibody; the basis of certain tests for identifying microorganisms
    quickening
    the process of showing signs of life
    radiography, skiagraphy
    the process of making a radiograph; producing an image on a radiosensitive surface by radiation other than visible light
    purification, refinement, refining
    the process of removing impurities (as from oil or metals or sugar etc.)
    regeneration
    (biology) growth anew of lost tissue or destroyed parts or organs
    regulation
    (embryology) the ability of an early embryo to continue normal development after its structure has been somehow damaged or altered
    relaxation
    (physiology) the gradual lengthening of inactive muscle or muscle fibers
    release
    a process that liberates or discharges something
    replication
    (genetics) the process whereby DNA makes a copy of itself before cell division
    reproduction
    the process of generating offspring
    reabsorption, resorption
    the organic process in which the substance of some differentiated structure that has been produced by the body undergoes lysis and assimilation
    ageing, aging, ripening
    acquiring desirable qualities by being left undisturbed for some time
    saltation
    (geology) the leaping movement of sand or soil particles as they are transported in a fluid medium over an uneven surface
    scanning
    the process of translating photographs into a digital form that can be recognized by a computer
    scattering
    the physical process in which particles are deflected haphazardly as a result of collisions
    secernment, secretion
    the organic process of synthesizing and releasing some substance
    segregation
    (genetics) the separation of paired alleles during meiosis so that members of each pair of alleles appear in different gametes
    sericulture
    raising silkworms in order to obtain raw silk
    shedding, sloughing
    the process whereby something is shed
    sink
    (technology) a process that acts to absorb or remove energy or a substance from a system
    slippage
    a decrease of transmitted power in a mechanical system caused by slipping
    soak, soakage, soaking
    the process of becoming softened and saturated as a consequence of being immersed in water (or other liquid)
    social process
    a process involved in the formation of groups of persons
    softening
    the process of becoming softer
    Solvay process
    an industrial process for producing sodium carbonate from sodium chloride and ammonia and carbon dioxide
    sorption
    the process in which one substance takes up or holds another (by either absorption or adsorption)
    source
    (technology) a process by which energy or a substance enters a system
    spiral
    a continuously accelerating change in the economy
    rigidification, rigidifying, stiffening
    the process of becoming stiff or rigid
    stimulation
    (physiology) the effect of a stimulus (on nerves or organs etc.)
    ecological succession, succession
    (ecology) the gradual and orderly process of change in an ecosystem brought about by the progressive replacement of one community by another until a stable climax is established
    summation
    (physiology) the process whereby multiple stimuli can produce a response (in a muscle or nerve or other part) that one stimulus alone does not produce
    supply
    offering goods and services for sale
    natural selection, selection, survival, survival of the fittest
    a natural process resulting in the evolution of organisms best adapted to the environment
    symphysis
    a growing together of parts or structures
    synapsis
    the side by side pairing of homologous maternal and paternal chromosomes at the start of meiosis
    synergism, synergy
    the working together of two things (muscles or drugs for example) to produce an effect greater than the sum of their individual effects
    synezesis, synizesis
    the contraction of chromatin towards one side of the nucleus during the prophase of meiosis
    temperature change
    a process whereby the degree of hotness of a body (or medium) changes
    transcription
    (genetics) the organic process whereby the DNA sequence in a gene is copied into mRNA; the process whereby a base sequence of messenger RNA is synthesized on a template of complementary DNA
    transduction
    the process whereby a transducer accepts energy in one form and gives back related energy in a different form
    transduction
    (genetics) the process of transfering genetic material from one cell to another by a plasmid or bacteriophage
    translation
    (genetics) the process whereby genetic information coded in messenger RNA directs the formation of a specific protein at a ribosome in the cytoplasm
    folding, protein folding
    the process whereby a protein molecule assumes its intricate three-dimensional shape
    translocation
    (genetics) an exchange of chromosome parts
    translocation
    the transport of dissolved material within a plant
    transpiration
    the emission of water vapor from the leaves of plants
    transpiration
    the passage of gases through fine tubes because of differences in pressure or temperature
    tumefaction
    the process of tumefying; the organic process whereby tissue becomes swollen by the accumulation of fluid within it
    ulceration
    the process of ulcer formation; the process of becoming ulcerated
    flowering, unfolding
    a developmental process
    uptake
    a process of taking up or using up or consuming
    vascularisation, vascularization
    the organic process whereby body tissue becomes vascular and develops capillaries
    blistering, vesication, vesiculation
    the formation of vesicles in or beneath the skin
    video digitizing
    the process of capturing and converting and storing video images for use by a computer
    vitrification
    the process of becoming vitreous
    vulcanisation, vulcanization
    process of treating rubber or rubberlike materials with sulphur at great heat to improve elasticity and strength or to harden them
    wastage
    the process of wasting
    broadening, widening
    an increase in width
    macular degeneration
    eye disease caused by degeneration of the cells of the macula lutea and results in blurred vision; can cause blindness
    type of:
    physical entity
    an entity that has physical existence
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