particle accelerator

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particle accelerator

n.
A device, such as a cyclotron or linear accelerator, that accelerates charged subatomic particles or nuclei to high energies for the purpose of colliding them with other particles or targets. Also called atom smasher.

particle accelerator

n
(General Physics) a machine for accelerating charged elementary particles to very high energies, used for research in nuclear physics. See also linear accelerator, cyclotron, betatron, synchrotron, synchrocyclotron

par′ticle accel`erator


n.
an electrostatic or electromagnetic device, as a cyclotron, that produces high-energy particles and focuses them on a target. Also called accelerator.
[1945–50]

particle accelerator

Any of several machines, such as the cyclotron and linear accelerator, that increase the speed and energy of protons, electrons, or other atomic particles and direct them at the nuclei of atoms, causing the nuclei to release new particles. Particle accelerators are used to study the atomic nucleus, to create radioactive isotopes, and to release elementary particles such as quarks. See Note at subatomic particle.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.particle accelerator - a scientific instrument that increases the kinetic energy of charged particlesparticle accelerator - a scientific instrument that increases the kinetic energy of charged particles
betatron, induction accelerator - accelerates a continuous beam of electrons to high speeds by means of the electric field produced by changing magnetic flux
charge-exchange accelerator - an accelerator in which high-energy ions escape from plasma following charge exchange
Cockcroft and Walton accelerator, Cockcroft and Walton voltage multiplier, Cockcroft-Walton accelerator, Cockcroft-Walton voltage multiplier - a high-voltage machine in which rectifiers charge capacitors that discharge and drive charged particles through an accelerating tube
collider - an accelerator in which two beams of particles are forced to collide head on
cyclotron - an accelerator that imparts energies of several million electron-volts to rapidly moving particles
linac, linear accelerator - ions are accelerated along a linear path by voltage differences on electrodes along the path
scientific instrument - an instrument used by scientists
storage ring - container consisting of a set of magnets set in a doughnut-shaped ring around which charged particles from an accelerator can be kept circulating until they are used
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