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A reduction or cutback in electric power, especially as a result of a shortage, a mechanical failure, or overuse by consumers.


1. (Electrical Engineering) a dimming or reduction in the use of electric lights in a city, esp to conserve electric power or as a defensive precaution in wartime
2. (Electrical Engineering) a temporary reduction in electrical power. Compare blackout3
3. (Computer Science) a temporary slowing down of the workings of the internet caused when too many users attempt to access it at the same time



any curtailment of electric power, esp. a voltage reduction to prevent a blackout.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.brownout - darkness resulting from the extinction of lights (as in a city invisible to enemy aircraft)brownout - darkness resulting from the extinction of lights (as in a city invisible to enemy aircraft)
aircraft - a vehicle that can fly
dark, darkness - absence of light or illumination
References in periodicals archive ?
This SBS design came about due to the off-line SBS's inability to provide an acceptable output voltage to the connected equipment during brown-out conditions.
Kung magkakaroon ng mga brown-out, magre-rely sa kandila ang mga tao.
When he assumed the Presidency, the country was bedeviled by brown-outs.
The use of cogeneration systems also allows residents access to electricity in the event of brown-outs and black-outs in the city.
As part of the contingency measures in case of brown-outs, the VCM has a back up battery which is guaranteed to last for 18 hours, which is more than enough time needed in the conduct of the election which will take place for around 11 hours.
Stressing the threat to the UK's energy supplies, it states: "Despite EDF currently [being] in the process of extending the operating lives of all its nuclear power stations and electricity consumers, in the ultimate, paying to have older, fossil fuel burning power stations kept on standby there is still a risk of brown-outs over the next few years.
Coal industry lobbyists say the new rules will probably raise household electricity costs, prompt power brown-outs during heat waves and cold snaps and destroy jobs at coal mines and manufacturing plants.
Tripoli residents reported frequent black- and brown-outs, along with a severe shortage of water in August and September 2011.
Users of these new models will be protected from the damaging effects of black-outs, brown-outs and transient power surges while supporting the move towards 'green energy savings' with a built-in eco-mode function that automatically shuts off unused computer accessories like printers or multi-media speakers.
Cyprus president Demetris Christofias has appointed his close aide and former communist lawmaker Kikis Kazamias as the new finance minister in a cabinet overhaul aimed at propping up popular support amid a major economic crisis and the worst disaster that has pushed the island to regular brown-outs.
The time and costs of building conventional power plants has risen sharply and the plants have grown more controversial, while today's real-time digital economy and sensitive electronics have made blackouts and brown-outs unacceptable.