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a. The act or process of stretching something tight.
b. The condition of so being stretched; tautness.
a. A force tending to stretch or elongate something.
b. A measure of such a force: a tension on the cable of 50 pounds.
a. Mental, emotional, or nervous strain: working under great tension to make a deadline.
b. Barely controlled hostility or a strained relationship between people or groups: the dangerous tension between opposing military powers.
4. A balanced relation between strongly opposing elements: "the continuing, and essential, tension between two of the three branches of government, judicial and legislative" (Haynes Johnson).
5. The interplay of conflicting elements in a piece of literature, especially a poem.
6. A device for regulating tautness, especially a device that controls the tautness of thread on a sewing machine or loom.
7. Electricity Voltage or potential; electromotive force.
tr.v. ten·sioned, ten·sion·ing, ten·sions
To subject to tension; tighten.

[Latin tēnsiō, tēnsiōn-, a stretching out, from tēnsus, past participle of tendere, to stretch; see tense1.]

ten′sion·al adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Before we get into the outcomes of our company's work, let's review the basics of conventional mesh-mounted frame stencils and mechanically tensioned, mesh-free frame systems.
Many scientists have studied the tensioning effect of circular saw blades tensioned by these two methods, as discussed below.
"Post tensioned slabs typically require individual floor models, manual loading inputs and complex design considerations.