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Suspension (chemistry)

In chemistry, a suspension is a dispersion (mixture) in which a finely-divided species is combined with another species, with the former being so finely divided and mixed that it doesn't rapidly settle out. In everyday life, the most common suspensions are those of solids in liquid water.

The term is widely used in Earth sciences to describe the transport of sediments in rivers and oceans. Particles that are suspended remain suspended so long as energy (provided in the form of a current) is applied to the system. The amount of energy determines the maximum size of particle that can be suspended. All particles down to colloidal size will settle in the absence of energy (aggitation).

See also: turbidity, settleable solids, sediment transport