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Real (true, actual) surface area[edit]

How do parties agree on the "real surface area"?

This brings to mind the question, "How Long Is the Coast of Britain?," because the "real surface area" depends on how it is measured.

The reference in this article says,

The technique used was a modification of geological "point counting," ... The author used a fine-link chain, which could be draped and applied over a length of one meter. This was done eight times for each meter-square quadrat; in some cases four meters of chain were required to equal one "straight" meter.

The article states this is "A common technique to measure seafloor rugosity," but then counters with "with the advent of underwater photography less invasive quantitative methods have been developed."

What method to determine rugosity is currently used in material science, where the article says this characteristic finds application? There seems to be no attempt to be quantitative in the article on asperity. - Ac44ck (talk) 19:36, 19 January 2014 (UTC)