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homogenization(həmŏj'ənəzā`shən), process in which a mixture is made uniform throughout. Generally this procedure involves reducing the size of the particles of one component of the mixture and dispersing them evenly throughout the other component. Probably the most familiar example of a homogenized product is commercially sold milk. In milk that has not been homogenized the globules of fat range in diameter from approximately 1 to 20 micrometers (millionths of a meter), or 40 to 800 millionths of an inch. This allows them to separate out from the rest of the milk if it is allowed to stand. After homogenization the globules are reduced to a range of sizes clustering closely about 1 micrometer and remain stably dispersed through the milk. Homogenization is usually accomplished by pumping the milk through a small opening at high pressure. Milk that has been homogenized is better suited for shipment in paper containers but deteriorates more rapidly than unhomogenized milk.
in metallurgy, the creation of a homogeneous (uniform) structure in alloys by getting rid of concentrated microirregularities formed in alloys during crystallization, diffusion metal spraying, and so forth. For homogenization, alloys are subjected to heat treatment—so-called diffusion or homogenizing annealing—during which for the diffusion processes the chemical composition in microvolumes is made uniform and commensurable with the size of the grains of the alloy. The annealing temperature is usually 0.8 to 0.9 of the temperature at which the alloy melts down. The duration of such annealing varies from one hour to several dozen hours and depends on the type of alloy, its structure, and the degree to which inhomogeneity is liquated. Homogenization improves the technological plasticity of alloys, increases the stability of the mechanical properties, and decreases their directionality.