- the quality or state of being complementary.
noun plural -ties
- a state or system that involves complementary components
- physics the principle that the complete description of a phenomenon in microphysics requires the use of two distinct theories that are complementary to each otherSee also duality (def. 2)
- The correspondence or similarity between nucleotides or strands of nucleotides of DNA and RNA molecules that allows precise pairing.
- The affinity that an antigen and an antibody have for each other as a result of the chemical arrangement of their combining sites.
- The concept that the underlying properties of entities (especially subatomic particles) may manifest themselves in contradictory forms at different times, depending on the conditions of observation; thus, any physical model of an entity exclusively in terms of one form or the other will be necessarily incomplete. For example, although a unified quantum mechanical understanding of such phenomena as light has been developed, light sometimes exhibits properties of waves and sometimes properties of particles (an example of wave-particle duality). See also uncertainty principle.