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I am a highschooler learning about adsorption for the first time.My school textbook says--

"The accumulation of molecular species at the surface rather than in the bulk of a solid or liquid is termed adsoption"(Definition 1)

and i started thinking What does molecular species mean? So i checked out Wikipedia-

Adsorption is the adhesion of atoms, ions or molecules from a gas, liquid or dissolved solid to a surface.(Defiinition 2)

So does the word molecular species in definition 1 refer to atoms,ions and molecules.(Definition 2)?

Also definition 1 mentions that this phenomenon takes place on the surface of a solid or liquid why does it not mention gases?

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  • $\begingroup$ Can you imagine molecules of gas get adsorbed on the surface of other gas ? $\endgroup$ – Poutnik Apr 26 at 18:20
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    $\begingroup$ A species (or chemical species) is an atom, ion, or molecule, basically anything that can appear in a chemical equation as reactant or product. It seems weird to include atoms in molecular species, but from the context of the definition, I would think they wanted to include atoms in their definition. $\endgroup$ – Karsten Theis Apr 26 at 18:37
  • $\begingroup$ @Poutnik no i can't imagine that but adsorption can happen at the interface of a gas and solid i guess so can i say that the solid is getting adsorbed. $\endgroup$ – Suzie Waters Apr 26 at 18:49
  • $\begingroup$ @KarstenTheis so molecular species would usually mean molecules?? $\endgroup$ – Suzie Waters Apr 26 at 18:51
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    $\begingroup$ No, the solid does not get adsorbed, it stays where it is. $\endgroup$ – Poutnik Apr 26 at 18:52
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So does the word molecular species in definition 1 refer to atoms,ions and molecules.(Definition 2)?

It is most probably referring to molecules.

Also definition 1 mentions that this phenomenon takes place on the surface of a solid or liquid why does it not mention gases?

That's because gases as such, do not have what you would call a "well-defined surface" unlike solids and liquids.

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