# contraction

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## contraction,

in physics: see expansionexpansion,
in physics, increase in volume resulting from an increase in temperature. Contraction is the reverse process. When heat is applied to a body, the rate of vibration and the distances between the molecules composing it are increased and, hence, the space occupied by the
.

## contraction,

in writing: see abbreviationabbreviation,
in writing, arbitrary shortening of a word, usually by cutting off letters from the end, as in U.S. and Gen. (General). Contraction serves the same purpose but is understood strictly to be the shortening of a word by cutting out letters in the middle, the omission
.

## contraction

[kən′trak·shən]
(graphic arts)
A microfilm defect in the form of a compressed image that occurs when the film speed is reduced as the document passes through a rotary microfilmer.
(mathematics)
A function f from a metric space to itself for which there is a constant K that is less than 1 such that, for any two elements in the space, a and b, the distance between f (a) and f (b) is less than K times the distance between a and b.
(mechanics)
The action or process of becoming smaller or pressed together, as a gas on cooling.
(physiology)
Shortening of the fibers of muscle tissue.

## contraction

Of concrete, the sum of volume changes occurring as the result of all processes affecting the bulk volume of a mass of concrete.

## contraction

1. Physiol any normal shortening or tensing of an organ or part, esp of a muscle, e.g. during childbirth
2. Pathol any abnormal tightening or shrinking of an organ or part

## contraction

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