TeX - LaTeX Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of TeX, LaTeX, ConTeXt, and related typesetting systems. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm wrapping text in a table, some of the cells have 4 words in, wrapped to have two in the first line and two in the second. LaTeX introduces a large space between the first two words so that the second word is at the end of the cell, and the spacing looks looks pretty messy. I can't reduce the cell size without it spreading over too many lines and can't increase the cell size without taking up too much space

\begin{tabular}{p{1.6cm} p{1.8cm} p{1.8cm} p{1.8cm} p{1.8cm} p{1.8cm}} \hline 
Wavelength (nm) & Rb trap depth ($\mu$K) &  Cs trap depth ($\mu$K) & Heating rate ($\mu$K/s) & Selectivity & Sustainability (s) \\

Here Rb and trap and also Cs and trap are so widely spaced they look like they're in the next column and I don't want to use lines to separate the columns.

Any thoughts on how to stop LaTeX spacing out these words?

share|improve this question
Welcome to TeX.sx! – texenthusiast Apr 6 '13 at 15:56
Can you please complete your code snippet to a complete minimal working example (MWE)? That helps us to see how your table does look and we can play with it to find a solution ... – Kurt Apr 6 '13 at 16:16

You probably don't need justified text here, using \raggedright setting avoids stretching the spaces.

Please always post complete documents not just fragments, as below..

enter image description here




\begin{tabular}{p{1.6cm} *5{>{\raggedright\arraybackslash}p{1.8cm}}} \hline 
Wavelength (nm) & Rb trap depth ($\mu$K) &  Cs trap depth ($\mu$K) &
Heating rate ($\mu$K/s) & Selectivity & Sustainability (s) \\
share|improve this answer

In addition to David Carlisle's, beautiful solution:

If you don't want to use array and need only a couple of fixes, a quick and dirty way would be to put your text in an \mbox{...}.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.