Definition of filament in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈfɪləm(ə)nt/


1A slender thread-like object or fibre, especially one found in animal or plant structures: each myosin filament is usually surrounded by 12 actin filaments
More example sentences
  • He had division of the terminal filament for a tethered spinal cord, which was thought to be the cause of his symptoms.
  • For example, all three contract when a rise in calcium inside the muscle cell allows interaction between actin and myosin filaments.
  • They use it to convert energy into movement, exerted against polar actin filaments.
string, wire, cable, cord
technical fibril, cilium
1.1 Botany The slender part of a stamen that supports the anther.
Example sentences
  • The style is enclosed in a tube formed by the five fused anthers and filaments.
  • In these flowers, the anthers are attached to the petals by short filaments half way down the corolla tube.
  • Smearing of pollen is facilitated by the fanning out of anthers borne at the ends of the filaments.
1.2 Astronomy A narrow streamer from the sun’s chromosphere or in its corona.
Example sentences
  • Picking a fax out of the machine, he reviewed the hand sketches of sunspots, coronal holes, filaments, and prominences of the Sun as drawn by observers at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico.
2A conducting wire or thread with a high melting point, forming part of an electric bulb or thermionic valve and heated or made incandescent by an electric current.
Example sentences
  • A strong, alternating current heats a resistive filament, causing it to emit electrons.
  • It is like comparing a red-hot poker pulled from a fire with the filament in an electric light bulb: there is no doubt concerning which is the brighter.
  • It glimmers at barely 1800 degrees Fahrenheit, which is cooler than a light bulb filament.



Pronunciation: /fɪləˈmɛnt(ə)ri/
Example sentences
  • When viewed in a small telescope, it appears as a large elliptical haze with no trace of the many beautiful filamentary arms with a multitude of branches revealed in this striking VLT image.
  • The tip may be elongate and flexible so that it packs the cavity by being folded upon itself a multiple number of times, or may pack the cavity by virtue of a filamentary or fuzzy structure of the tip.
  • Note that, even at this early era, galaxies are clustered into filamentary structures, separated by empty voids.


Example sentences
  • He worries that ‘a finely filamented electronic mesh has slipped between ourselves and the outside world’.
  • Single-barrelled micropipettes were made from filamented borosilicate glass tubing.
  • The semi-crystalline filamented structure provides internal support, superimposed on the structural interactions of branched structures that produce the vane of body contour and flight feathers.


Pronunciation: /fɪləˈmɛntəs/
Example sentences
  • Also, a mat of threadlike filamentous algae floating on the surface greatly increases the rate of water loss through evaporation.
  • I saw the honeyeaters so well that I could see the filamentous white plumes on their black throats.
  • All told, filamentous growth represents a complex biological output that is influenced to a greater or lesser degree by many parameters.


Late 16th century: from French, or from modern Latin filamentum, from late Latin filare 'to spin', from Latin filum 'thread'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: fila|ment

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