Definition of China syndrome in English:

China syndrome

Syllabification: Chi·na syn·drome


  • A hypothetical sequence of events following the meltdown of a nuclear reactor, in which the core melts through its containment structure and deep into the earth.
    More example sentences
    • It'll be like the China syndrome, but reversed.
    • It may have something to do with the China syndrome.
    • Hedge funds are derivatives on steroids, and the near collapse of one hedge fund nearly caused the financial equivalent of ‘the China syndrome.’


1970s: from China (as being on the opposite side of the earth from a reactor in the US).

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Pronunciation: kərf
a slit made by cutting with a saw