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hey all, i need to know how a sponge works. Or a candle wick, or even a tree-root for that matter. What causes liquid to be absorbed ( against gravity ) into a substance (like a sponge, etc..) . What energy or process causes this to happen?

Physics
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simply it is the capillary rise and surface tension which does the job. Sponge has got tiny pores through which water seeps in by capillary rise........
there are some other cohesive forces which are acting within the liquids (surface tension for instance). This helps them to defy gravity at times...
They have holes. Stuff fits into the holes until the holes are full.

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forces acting against gravity include capilary rise(due to surface tension), osmotic pressure since the concentration of water is more in the soil compared to the cell of roots.

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