Definition of van de Graaff generator in English:

Share this entry

van de Graaff generator

Pronunciation: /ˌvan də ˌɡraf ˈjenəˌrādər/

noun

Physics
A machine devised to produce a high voltage by means of an endless belt collecting electrostatic charge from a source and transferring it to a large isolated metal dome, on which a large charge accumulates.
Example sentences
  • When connected to the van de Graaff generator, the material inside it will bounce around rapidly
  • The massive piece of equipment is, in principle, just a souped-up version of the van de Graaff generators you probably remember from high school physics class.
  • A range of accessories are available for our van de Graaff generators, or perhaps you fancy your hand at building one yourself?

Origin

1930s: named after Robert Jemison van de Graaff (1901–67), US physicist.

Share this entry
 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.