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I am using the symbol $\partial_p^{(K,L)}$ in inline mode in several place in my master's thesis and it takes up too much vertical space---so much that the spacing between the line containing the symbol and the line above it is larger than the spacing between "normal" lines.

How can I solve this?

I realize that one option is to use \smash{\partial_p^{(K,L)}} but then the symbol overlaps with a symbol from the line on the top. (Using \smash[b]{...} again screws up the vertical spacing.)

  • You seem to be between a rock and a hard place. Something has to give... either a generally larger line-spacing is needed, or you need to retain the \smash and artificially introduce some extra verbiage to horizontally offset (thus avoiding) the potential overlap. – Steven B. Segletes Mar 21 '16 at 16:34
  • You could try smaller font (e.g. \scriptsize or \scriptstyle). – John Kormylo Mar 21 '16 at 16:37
  • I made several sentences more awkward (e.g. changed "because" into "which follows from the fact that") and now it looks less terrible. I'm definitely not changing the spacing of the whole document because of few sentences. – blazs Mar 21 '16 at 16:41
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    You should consider \partial_p^{\scriptscriptstyle(K,L)} defining a macro, of course: \newcommand{\foo}[2]{\partial_{#1}^{\scriptscriptstyle#2}} and then use \foo{p}{(K,L)} – egreg Mar 21 '16 at 16:50
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Apply the \smash operation only to the subscript term:

$\partial_{\smash{p}}^{(K,L)}$
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    I can say that it does not work (see overlap and larger line spacing): \documentclass{article} \begin{document} blah blah blah $\partial_{\smash{p}}^{(K,L)}$ blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah bl $\partial_p^{(K,L)}$ blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah bl \end{document} – Steven B. Segletes Mar 21 '16 at 16:34
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    Alright, I should have qualified my recommendation by noting that it might result in the superscript of one \partial_{\smash{p}}^{(K,L)} term becoming entangled with the subscript of another \partial_{\smash{p}}^{(K,L)} term if the terms just happen to line up "just right" -- as they do in your sample code. Let's see if the OP weighs in with more information as to whether or not this is going to be a real problem. – Mico Mar 21 '16 at 16:39
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    Fair enough. As you see in my comment, I also recommend taking evasive action to avoid potential overlap. – Steven B. Segletes Mar 21 '16 at 16:40
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    Well, this did help (I also reworded the problematic sentences to avoid overlap). Thanks, you guys are great. :-) – blazs Mar 21 '16 at 16:46
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    \smash[t]{p} would be better (requires amsmath). – egreg Mar 21 '16 at 16:53

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