diffusion

noun
dif·​fu·​sion | \ di-ˈfyü-zhən How to pronounce diffusion (audio) \

Definition of diffusion

1 : the state of being spread out or transmitted especially by contact : the action of diffusing the diffusion of knowledge
3a chemistry : the process whereby particles of liquids, gases, or solids intermingle as the result of their spontaneous movement caused by thermal (see thermal entry 1 sense 1b) agitation and in dissolved substances move from a region of higher to one of lower concentration
b physics
(1) : reflection of light by a rough reflecting surface
(2) : transmission of light through a translucent material : scattering
4 : the spread of cultural elements from one area or group of people to others by contact
5 photography : the softening of sharp outlines in an image

Other Words from diffusion

diffusional \ di-​ˈfyü-​zhə-​nᵊl How to pronounce diffusion (audio) \ adjective

Examples of diffusion in a Sentence

the author's tendency toward diffusion makes the novel a tedious read
Recent Examples on the Web One movie every few years, one cartoon at a time, no Smallville cameo for fear of brand diffusion — and remember the near-decade separating George Clooney from Christian Bale? Darren Franich, EW.com, 5 Jan. 2022 This type of diffusion of blame is extremely common in fraud cases, says David Sklansky, who teaches and writes about criminal law at Stanford. Arielle Pardes, Wired, 23 Nov. 2021 The rapid diffusion of AI and machine learning technologies provides widely accessible tools. Tomoko Yokoi, Forbes, 2 Mar. 2021 Neatly painted aside from a slight diffusion outside of Fanning's lipline, the merlot lipstick (supplied by makeup artist Kate Synnott), exuded moody cool and seasonal sultriness. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, 8 Nov. 2021 Bendsten sees luxury packaging as an introduction to high fashion, likening a designer dust bag or shopping tote to diffusion lines, like MM6 Maison Margiela or the now-defunct Marc by Marc Jacobs. Eliza Huber, refinery29.com, 3 June 2021 The team confirmed the correlation between NfL levels and injury severity with a nonstandard MRI analysis called diffusion tensor imaging, and brain volume measurements. Max G. Levy, Wired, 21 Oct. 2021 Previous encapsulation devices relied on diffusion alone to transport nutrients to cells. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, 28 Sep. 2021 The authors use four succinct points to frame Schumpeter’s thought: First, innovation, supported by a wide diffusion of knowledge, lies at the heart of any economy’s growth process. Milton Ezrati, Forbes, 18 Oct. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'diffusion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of diffusion

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for diffusion

Middle English diffusioun "outpouring (of speech)," borrowed from Late Latin diffūsiōn-, diffūsiō "pouring out (of liquids), watering of the eyes, abundance" (Latin, "geniality"), from Latin diffud-, variant stem of diffundere "to pour out over a wide surface, spread out, extend" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal action — more at diffuse entry 2

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Time Traveler for diffusion

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The first known use of diffusion was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near diffusion

diffuser

diffusion

diffusion coefficient

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Statistics for diffusion

Last Updated

17 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Diffusion.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/diffusion. Accessed 26 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for diffusion

diffusion

noun
dif·​fu·​sion | \ di-ˈfyü-zhən How to pronounce diffusion (audio) \

Kids Definition of diffusion

1 : the act of spreading or allowing to spread freely
2 : the mixing of particles of liquids or gases so that they move from a region of high concentration to one of lower concentration

diffusion

noun
dif·​fu·​sion | \ dif-ˈyü-zhən How to pronounce diffusion (audio) \

Medical Definition of diffusion

1 : the process whereby particles of liquids, gases, or solids intermingle as the result of their spontaneous movement caused by thermal agitation and in dissolved substances move from a region of higher to one of lower concentration
2a : reflection of light by a rough reflecting surface
b : transmission of light through a translucent material

Other Words from diffusion

diffusional \ -​ˈyüzh-​nəl, -​ən-​ᵊl How to pronounce diffusion (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on diffusion

Nglish: Translation of diffusion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of diffusion for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about diffusion

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