Definition of catenary in English:

catenary

Line breaks: ca¦ten|ary
Pronunciation: /kəˈtiːnəri
 
/

noun (plural catenaries)

  • 1A curve formed by a wire, rope, or chain hanging freely from two points that are not in the same vertical line: [as modifier]: a catenary wire
    More example sentences
    • A catenary is the curve describing a rope or chain hanging loosely between two fixed points.
    • Other topics which Adrain wrote about include a study of the catenary, and other curves which he called isotomous.
    • While others in the profession worked with straight edges, Gaudi invented his own methods for modeling parabolic arches from the catenary curve created by suspending a length of chain between two points.
  • 1.1A wire, rope, or chain forming a catenary: a catenary from the electrical grid
    More example sentences
    • I later found out that the problem was a transformer fire in the Bronx, which resulted in a loss of power to the overhead catenary along the Hell Gate Bridge line.
    • To add certainty to these movements, the officers used the cables of the RENFE catenary and the mountains in the background as a point of reference.
    • On the way, we passed underneath the METRA line we had ridden earlier, over a waterway, past the Skokie Shops, and experienced a power change as the train switched from third rail to overhead catenary power.

Origin

mid 18th century: from Latin catenarius 'relating to a chain', from catena 'chain'.

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