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approximant Line breaks: ap¦proxi|mant
Pronunciation: /əˈprɒksɪm(ə)nt/

Definition of approximant in English:


1 Mathematics A function, series, or other expression which is an approximation to the solution of a problem.
Example sentences
  • In 1899 Padé published another major work on Padé approximants which, as we noted above, looked in depth at approximants of the exponential function.
  • Applied mathematicians have found that by approximating functions by continued function expansions, called Padé approximants, they often obtain far more accurate low-order approximations than by using Taylor series expansions.
2 Phonetics A consonant produced by bringing one articulator (the tongue or lips) close to another without actually touching it, as in English r and w.
Example sentences
  • It is phonologically impossible since Tamil has no [z] sound and since the retroflex approximant sometimes romanized < z > cannot appear in initial position.
  • The approximant r can also be regarded as a glide.
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